A local historian and retired educator and his wife were seriously injured in a head-on collision Saturday afternoon.
Charles and Kathy Finley of Dawsonville were airlifted to Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta in critical condition following a two-car collision on Ga. 53 near the Dawson-Forsyth county line.
The driver of the second vehicle, Mickey Bunton, was flown to Atlanta Medical Center in serious but stable condition, according to Dawson County Emergency Services Battalion Chief Robby Lee.
A spokeswoman with Georgia State Patrol, which is investigating, said no additional information was available.
Charles Finley is considered a historic expert on Dawson County.
He has penned several books about the county’s schools and is working on an authoritative history of Dawson County.
“He’s been working on it for about the last two years and was hoping to have it finished this fall so it could go to press for Christmas,” said Helen Taylor, a member of the local historical society.
“He has a multigenerational love for history and the fabric of Dawson County.”
Longtime friend and colleague Nicky Gilleland, former Dawson County school superintendent, said Charles Finley remained in critical condition at Grady.
“Charles, his airbag didn’t deploy. I’m not sure why,” said Gilleland.
“He’s beat up and banged up. They said every big bone except in his right leg was broken.”
Finley’s wife, Kathy, had been released from the intensive care unit and was moved to a private room on Monday, according to Gilleland.
“She’s doing better, but they are waiting to operate on her foot,” he said.
In a text message sent Monday morning, the couple’s son Ben said his father was far from “being out of the woods yet” and asked for prayers.