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Bryan County loses 'a good friend'
Banker and Chamber officer Harry Hooten dies
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Harry Hooten, a bank officer at First Bank of Coastal Georgia and a long time contributor to the Richmond Hill/Bryan County Chamber of Commerce, was found dead of an apparent heart attack at his Jerico Trail home on Friday.

According to a co-worker, Hooten’s not showing up for work at the bank prompted a home visit.

Hooten was 54. He reportedly died of a heart attack while watching television at home.

Hooten was an active board member of the Chamber for four years, serving on the Executive Board as treasurer for the past two years. He served on the financial committee for the Great Ogeechee Seafood Festival for three years. He also served on many other Chamber committees.

"We are deeply saddened by the loss of Harry, who was a good friend and colleague," Chamber Director Kittie Franklin said. "Harry donated many hours of volunteer time to the Chamber. You could always count on Harry to be where he said he was going to be, when he said he would be there. He was just a great person, board member and friend, and his presence will be greatly missed."

Nevin Patton, senior vice president of First Bank of Coastal Georgia, said Hooten was well respected in the community and will be greatly missed by a large number of friends and employees.

"He was a great friend," Patton said. "This is a huge loss, and so very sad."

Patton said Hooten was a talented banker and a true asset to his bank. Hooten has been a local banker for 20 years.

"His real strength was working with people," Patton said. "He was very good at dealing with people. Customers could tell very quickly they could trust him and that he had best their best interests at heart."

Hooten was single with no children, but leaves behind relatives in his native town of Bainbridge. Hooten left Bainbridge to attend Georgia Southern before settling in Richmond Hill.

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