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Times mailroom employee killed in crash Christmas weekend in Hart County
Robert Fortner
Bobby Fortner

A mailroom employee at The Times in Gainesville died after the car he was in struck a tree in Hart County, according to authorities.

Robert “Bobby” Fortner, 22, was killed in the crash about 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 26, on Bethany Bowersville Road.  

Georgia State Patrol Cpl. William Jordan said Brandon Driver, 21, of Canon, was driving a Toyota Camry east on Bethany Bowersville Road when the car left the road and struck a tree.

Driver and front-seat passenger, Jessica Vrooman, 26, of Canon, were transported to AnMed Health in Anderson, South Carolina with injuries. Jordan said Vrooman’s injuries were considered minor, while Driver had serious injuries.

Fortner, who was the backseat passenger, died at the crash.

No further information was released by Georgia State Patrol regarding the wreck.

Fortner had worked for The Times previously, and after a brief hiatus had recently returned to a position in the mailroom at the newspaper.

"Bobby had just come back to work for us on a full-time basis,” Times Production Director Mark Hall said in a statement. “We were really glad that he did, and you could tell he was excited to be back with us. He always had a smile on his face and was a pleasure to work with. He was a fine young man, and this news is just incredibly sad.”