Rep. Bandy died of injuries sustained in Columbus collision, coroner says

State Rep. George Bandy, the longtime lawmaker for District 83 in East Alabama, died Jan. 16 of injuries sustained in a Jan. 5 collision on Andrews Road in Columbus, authorities said Tuesday.

Bandy, who represented parts of Lee and Russell counties, died of internal injuries at Navicent Health, a level one trauma center in Macon, said Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan. He was 72.

Police said Bandy was driving a 2003 Mazda Protege southwest on Andrews Road when a vehicle driven by a 60-year-old man traveling northeast pulled off of the roadway east of 23rd Avenue to attempt a U-turn in front of Bandy’s Mazda around 8:38 p.m. The front bumper of Bandy’s car struck the passenger’s side of the Dodge 1500 Ram pickup.

The impact of the collision caused the pickup to overturn on the driver’s side door. Bandy was left unconscious after the crash and was unable to talk to police.

Bandy was transported to Midtown Medical Center in Columbus after the crash but was later airlifted to the hospital in Macon, the coroner said. Authorities in Columbus weren’t notified of Bandy’s death until Jan. 18, the coroner said.

Bryan said the hospital provided preliminary cause of the lawmaker’s death from internal injuries. The coroner said those records have been requested as part of the death investigation.

“We have resubmitted our request,” the coroner said. “They will provide them to us. It is a state law.”

The pickup driver was charged with traffic offenses after the crash. Charges included driving while license suspended, improper U-turn and having no proof of insurance, police said in a report.

The collision remains under investigation by the Motor Squad Division of the Columbus Police Department.

On the day of Bandy’s death, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey recognized him as a dedicated public servant for almost 25 years.

“Since his election in 1994, he has been a dedicated public servant to the people of Lee and Russell counties,” she said. “My thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and fellow legislators during this difficult time.”

Bandy was chair of the Alabama House of Representative’s Lee County Legislation committee and served on the State Government and Transportation Utilities and Infrastructure committees.