Farmer killed in accident

Published 8:39 am Wednesday, October 21, 2009

NEWSOMS—A Newsoms farmer was fatally injured in a farm accident Tuesday morning.

Guy “Buddy” Pope Rountree Jr., 64, and his son were working in a cotton field at about 9:15 a.m. in the 28000 block of Blackhead Signpost Road just outside of Newsoms.

Sheriff Vernie Francis said that Rountree was attempting to start a tractor when the accident occurred.

“When it started, it engaged and pulled him under,” he said. “This is just a tragic accident.”

Rountree died at the scene.

According to the sheriff, Rountree was “well-known, well-respected and well-liked in the community.”

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family,” he said.

Rountree also was a member of the Newsoms Town Council.

“I like to think the town was one of his first priorities,” said Newsoms Mayor Harvey Porter Jr. “He gave his opinion on all the issues that came up.”

Porter said he had known Rountree personally for many years, too.

“He seemed to be jovial all the time,” the mayor said. “This news really blind-sided me.”

Newsoms resident Eddie White said that he knew Rountree through farming and was saddened to hear about the accident.

“He was a fine man and everybody knew him,” he said. “He was loved by Newsoms’ people.”