WAYCROSS, Ga. (AP) — Two young citizen-soldiers who became close friends after enlisting in the Army Reserve were remembered at funerals in southeast Georgia on Saturday, nearly three weeks after they died in a drone attack while deployed to the Middle East.

CARROLLTON, Ga. (AP) — The flag-draped casket of Staff Sgt. William Jerome Rivers stood at the front of a church Tuesday as Georgia's governor joined the Army Reserve soldier's family, uniformed military officers and his pastor from New Jersey who made the trip to say farewell.

ATLANTA   — Declaring that there is no place for hate in Georgia, Gov. Brian Kemp signed an antisemitism bill into law on Wednesday to protect the state's Jewish population from harassment, intimidation or violence. "Our Jewish citizens have experienced hate in the form of antisemitic flyers spread across neighborhoods, messages on social media calling for the death of Jews in Israel and around the world and even hateful gatherings outside synagogues," Kemp said at the bill signing ceremony. "So, we are all thankful for the perseverance and dedication shown in getting this bill across the finish line as we work together to send a clear, unified message: In Georgia, we proudly stand with our Jewish brothers and sisters."

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Described by their parents as bubbly and constantly laughing, Spc. Kennedy Sanders and Spc. Breonna Moffett became close friends soon after enlisting in the Army Reserve five years ago. Sgt. William Jerome Rivers served a tour in Iraq before joining the same company of Army engineers. The three citizen-soldiers from different corners of Georgia all died in a weekend drone strike on a U.S. base in Jordan near the Syrian border that also wounded more than 40 others.

ATLANTA — As a Southern Baptist, Suzanne Guy felt obligated to push for passage of an antisemitism bill that cleared the state legislature on Thursday. “It should be important to everyone because it is important to the God of the Bible who has a special covenant with the Jewish people,” Guy said after the measure received final passage and was sent to Gov. Brian Kemp who is expected to sign it into law.

PLAINS, Ga. (AP) — The Washington chattering class, often unsure what to make of outsiders, dubbed Rosalynn Carter the “Steel Magnolia” when she arrived as first lady. A devout Baptist and mother of four, she was diminutive and outwardly shy, with a soft smile and softer Southern accent. That was the “magnolia.” She also was a force behind Jimmy Carter’s rise from peanut farmer to winner of the 1976 presidential election. That was the “steel.”

ATLANTA — The Georgia Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a lower court ruling that the state's abortion law was invalid, leaving limited access to abortions unchanged for now. Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney said last November that the ban was “unequivocally unconstitutional” because it was enacted in 2019, when Roe v. Wade allowed abortions well past six weeks. Georgia’s law bans most abortions after roughly six weeks. The Georgia Supreme Court in a 6-1 decision said McBurney was wrong.

VALDOSTA, Ga. — Hurricane Idalia arrived in Georgia as a Category 1 storm with maximum sustained winds of 90 mph Wednesday morning, bringing heavy rains, toppling trees, knocking out power, and causing lowland flooding. First responders in southern Georgia used boats to rescue some residents stranded by localized flooding. Utility crews worked throughout the day to restore power in hard-hit areas.

CANTON, Ga. — Volunteers gathered Saturday at Georgia National Cemetery in Canton, Ga., to place flags on the graves of veterans for the Memorial Day holiday. Following a brief ceremony that included a 21-gun-salute, the playing of "Taps" and a benediction, volunteers spread across the cemetery in the rolling Georgia hills to decorate the markers.

ATLANTA — Georgia lawmakers wrapped up this year's legislative session on Wednesday, steadfastly refusing to legalize sports betting or pari-mutuel wagering on horse racing.

ATLANTA – Gov. Brian Kemp wasted no time signing the $1 billion state income tax rebate the General Assembly passed this week. The Republican governor put his signature on House Bill 162 late Tuesday, just hours after the Georgia Senate gave the legislation final passage.

FORT STEWART, Ga. — About 4,500 soldiers will deploy this summer from Fort Stewart in southeast Georgia to Europe, where they will train with NATO allies as part of a troop buildup the U.S. has maintained in the region since Russia invaded Ukraine. Maj. Gen. Charles D. Constanza and his 3rd Infantry Division command staff will deploy for an estimated nine months along with soldiers from the division's 2nd Armored Brigade, Division Artillery Brigade and Division Sustainment Brigade, Fort Stewart officials said Wednesday.

ATLANTA – Georgia lawmakers have rejected three bills that would have  legalized  sports betting and pari-mutuel wagering on horse races in the Bible Belt state. The latest loss for pro-gambling forces came Monday when they were unable to convince enough Senate lawmakers to approve a proposed constitutional amendment. The proposal fell short of the two-thirds supermajority it needed to pass.

ATLANTA — One of a series of legislative proposals that would have legalized sports gambling and opened the door to pari-mutuel betting on horse racing in Georgia fell far short of the votes it needed to move forward in the Senate on Thursday. The 37-19 vote may signal that two other pro-gambling bills still pending will face long odds.

Flags and flowers decorated graves at Marietta National Cemetery in Marietta, Ga., this weekend as the nation celebrates Memorial Day and honors fallen soldiers.

PEMBROKE, Ga. — Georgia Baptist Disaster Relief workers reacted quickly to violent storms that were blamed for the deaths of at least three people across the South.

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — They had barely a week to prepare — getting medical screenings, making sure bills would be paid, arranging for relatives to care for children and pets — before marching with rucksacks and rifles onto a plane bound for Germany.

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Republicans advanced a bill Wednesday that would ban the delivery of abortion pills by mail and require women to be examined by a physician in person before the pills are dispensed.

When officials in Chester, Georgia, heard that the 2020 census had pegged their small town at 525 people, their jaws dropped. They believed the town was almost triple that size and feared an inaccurate number could force them to make budget cuts.

ATLANTA (AP) — Gov. Brian Kemp is proposing almost $3 billion more in spending from state revenue in the 2023 budget year that begins July 1, led by more than $1 billion in pay and retirement increases for Georgia's state, K-12 and university employees.

ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. (AP) — When Ron Binkney and Lucky found a pretty seashell near a lone cedar tree while walking the beaches of St. Simons Island, the spirit of Christmas was still a distant …

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