At the November meeting of the Greenwood City Council, the family of Dr. James and Myra Burgess were honored with a memorial to their late son, Trey. Mayor Doug Kinslow, and Councilman Daniel McDaniel declared the name of the future Greenwood Bypass, “Trey Burgess Memorial Highway.”
James Alfred Burgess, III, known to friends and family as “Trey,” graduated from Greenwood High School in 1979. He obtained his barber’s license, following in his grandfather and father’s footsteps as a third generation barber. Trey was a member of the Greenwood Fire Department for 21 years and Director of the Greenwood Housing Authority for 26 years. In November of 2014, he was elected as a Greenwood City Council Member. Trey Burgess was unable to fulfil his term as he battled brain cancer, and passed away on May 11, 2015 at the age of 54.
Trey Burgess’ family and friends were in attendance as the sign was unveiled, honoring the man who served passionately within his beloved city.
Alderman McDaniel, Trey Burgess’ successor, credited the family’s patriarch for his leadership and guidance as he stepped into that role. “Twenty years ago I was urged by Dr. Burgess to run for council for the first time and back then the citizenry was canvassed for concerns, to which traffic and water were #1 and #2. They had consistently been a problem for this community for many years…Around 10 years ago, Dr. Burgess was on the board at James Fork and was instrumental in signing a contract to provide Greenwood with good, clean potable water and as a result, rationing of water subsided…These are things to be expected with a growing city.” McDaniel went on to speak about the traffic issues. “I believe every mayor has had plans or ideas, but no action plan behind them…A meeting with ARdot and city officials was held…Dr. Burgess, the property owner, was also in attendance…Then we had a plan.”
Voters approved that plan 3-1 in December of 2019. Dr. Burgess, whom Mayor Kinslow dubbed “Mr. Greenwood,” was one of the land owners who made the bypass possible. “He was clear, he wanted to see the traffic relief proposal pass,” added Kinslow. “It was very important to him. He wanted it for the future of Greenwood…and he let me know that he wanted it done in his lifetime.”
McDaniel expressed his gratitude towards Dr. and Myra Burgess, and the entire Burgess family for all of their contributions to the City of Greenwood. Dr. Burgess responded with the same heartfelt emotion. “I could never equally give back all that Greenwood has done for us,” Dr. Burgess concluded. “I hope that the bypass is good for Greenwood…”