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Bells Mill Bridge may be named after fallen Deputy Blane Dixon
Dixon and Couch
Deputy Nicolas Blane Dixon, left, and Hall County Sheriff Gerald Couch. - photo by Hall County Sheriff's Office

Bells Mill Bridge in North Hall may be named after fallen Hall County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Nicolas Blane Dixon.

Senate Resolution 844 seeks to dedicate the bridge on Cleveland Highway/U.S. 129 as Deputy Nicolas Blane Dixon Memorial Bridge and to authorize the Georgia Department of Transportation to put up signs at the structure.

“I think naming this iconic and significant structure in Hall County for the late Deputy Dixon is very appropriate,” State Sen. Butch Miller, R-Gainesville said. “After all, this bridge is a significant and enduring structure in Hall County, and Deputy Dixon's service and memory should be as such.”

Miller is among several senators sponsoring the legislation.

“The State of Georgia lost one of its finest citizens and most dedicated law enforcement officers” with Dixon’s death, the resolution states.

The resolution also says that Dixon graduated from North Hall High School “and followed his lifelong dream to serve others as a law enforcement officer.”

Hall Sheriff Gerald Couch, who approached officials about naming the bridge after Dixon, said, “I certainly wanted to honor Deputy Dixon and make sure his sacrifice was not forgotten by this community and future generations of law enforcement officers. (Motorists) will see those signs and remember him.

“Also, a good portion of the Dixon family regularly travels Cleveland Highway. This is one way to let them know that we will not forget.”

Dixon was shot and killed July 7 while chasing burglary suspects. A community outpouring of grief followed the tragedy, including hundreds turning out for his funeral procession.

Tributes continued through 2019, including a Christmas tree decorated in his honor in the Hall County Magistrate Court’s office.

Bells Mill Bridge, meanwhile, is being replaced with a new two-lane structure over East Fork Little River. The work is being paired with the Longstreet Bridge replacement also on U.S. 129, with an overall official completion date of September 2020.

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