VALDOSTA — Described by some as the “Lewis Grizzard of real estate,” Lowndes County Tax Assessor Mike Hill died this week.
He was 69 years old.
He combined a family history of newspapers with his career in real estate to write a weekly Valdosta Daily Times column for about a decade.
Hill’s columns were noted for both his often biting sense of humor as well as his ability to explain real estate matters.
Noting how property had changed around Valdosta State University from the 1970s to early 2000s, Hill wrote:
“Back when it used to snow heavily in Valdosta and I had to trudge barefoot to school and to work through two feet of it, uphill both ways, I bought a small house near what was then Valdosta State College.
“Now, of course, the college has become a university and is no longer just close to my little house, it’s next to it and is threatening to surround it. The house had space heaters and when the world climate changed and the dinosaurs died, we added a couple of lonely window air conditioners.
“When we bought another house, we rented the old one out, often to students, and that worked reasonably well for awhile, since not all students had cars back then and those living in that little house could walk to school.
“Now, of course, the students often show up in new BMW’s or new pickup trucks — the trucks with increasingly loud mufflers I wish somebody would do something about — and they didn’t know what those space heaters were.
“I remember one student’s mother looked at the place and asked what those little gas grill type things were doing in the bedrooms, so not only have darn near all of the students grown up with central heat and air, apparently their parents have, too.
“Reminds me that I was born just short of the middle of the last century. Used to keep a dinosaur for a pet. “
Hill owned and operated Mike Hill…