Lowdown on the Upstate

Here’s one for the grocery-store rags.

Lots going on here in the buckle of the Bible Belt, otherwise known as Upstate South Carolina.

Darwin Wright Park is a lovely wooded retreat here in Anderson, with paths opening onto a sunny beach beside Lake Hartwell.

Gary Burgess, Sr., retired Anderson County School District 4 superintendent and former high school principal, has just been hired as superintendent of District 2 schools in the Low Country county of Hampton.

So, what’s the connection? Burgess, 51, married and the father of one child, has been charged with “soliciting an immoral act” after approaching an undercover cop in Darwin Wright Park.

IMHO, it’s a real tragedy when a person has to live life in secrecy as though facing the Gestapo or the Spanish Inquisition.


A week ago tonight, in Greenville, S.C., just to the east of me as the crow flies, a Maserati went airborne, slicing through a house and killing Frederick William "Bill" Bardsley, 62, who had just sat down in his living room to watch a ballgame. According to the police report, the car left the highway, flew above a field, through some trees and over a 6-foot fence before going through the rear of the house, exiting the front and coming to a stop on the front lawn. Neither the victim’s wife, who had just left her husband’s side and gone upstairs, nor the driver of the car was injured.

Furman University in Greenville is a Baptist liberal arts college which boasts, to its credit, that it “has always valued particular religious commitments while insisting not only on the freedom of the individual to believe as he or she sees fit but also on respect for a diversity of religious perspectives, including the perspective of the non-religious person. This heritage has always maintained that the religious journey has both a private and public dimension and is a lifelong undertaking that cannot be tied to doctrinal propositions.” (LINK)

John Gilbert Ludwig, 36, is a prominent Greenville businessman, owner and CEO of SDI Networks, a computer networking and solutions company. Ludwig, “with close ties to Furman University,” is a 1994 graduate and played football for the university’s Paladins. SDI Networks is an award-winning business, based in Greenville, S.C., with locations in Columbia and Charleston, S.C.; Atlanta, Ga.; Birmingham, Ala.; Knoxville and Nashville, Tenn.; and Charlotte, N.C. The company is a contributor to Greenville charities and community projects. (LINK)

The connection? John Gilbert Ludwig was driving the Maserati.

For days local law enforcement would not release the name of the driver, then when pressured to do so, stated there was some question as to whether Ludwig was alone in the car. He was.

After Ludwig’s name was release, records show no charges filed to date and no ticket issued. Then, came the disclosure that he is already “out on bond” for previous arrests for burglary, resisting arrest and domestic violence.

Citizens of this area are demanding that Ludwig be indicted for vehicular homicide. A Facebook page titled “Indict John Ludwig Now!" is calling for action by the local prosecutor. On Wednesday, Solicitor Bob Ariail said his office is closely following the investigation. Let’s hope so.

As of the local news at 11 Friday night, no charges have been filed against Ludwig.


EXTRA! EXTRA! Read all the details:

The Burgess bust, Anderson (SC) Independent-Mail: LINK

Maserati driver identified, WYFF4: LINK

Ludwig’s rap sheet, WYFF4, LINK

“Indict John Ludwig Now!", Facebook: LINK


Infidel753 said...

A week ago tonight, in Greenville, S.C., just to the east of me as the crow flies,

I think you mean "as the Maserati flies".

Maybe Ludwig thought he was being Raptured and was trying to take the car with him? Those things cost a bundle. Wouldn't want to leave it behind.

Curious that he hasn't been indicted. Sad that Burgess has.

Queen T with Crabs said...

Hmmmm! Does John Gilbert Ludwig know Bernie Madoff? Or is he a relative of his? Maybe a student? Economic expert?

Try not to have all the excitement in your own back yard. With this economic recession, others need a little entertainment too!

Frodo, Tippin' the Scales said...

Do Baptists believe in Original Sin? Then, maybe, Ludwig could claim double jeopardy?

B.J. said...

Trying to find out if an arrest has been made, I did a google search for "John Ludwig WYFF4 May 2, 2009" and DemWit is in the top two slots. BTW, if you click on the Facebook link, there's a link to a youtube showing the trajectory of the Maserati's flight. And finally, I have it on good authority that "Queen" was invited to a friend's dinner last night and had shrimp, CRAB legs and blackberry cobbler. BJ

B.J. said...

Instinct says "Win Willie," but I'm going with "General Quarters." I want Shiek Mohammed's phone number. BJ