BJ Van Gundy: Super Republican

BJ may have lost the GAGOP chairman’s race, but he was the talk of the town after assisting an Athens police officer with a man who was on drugs:

As he helped a Hilton Garden Inn guest with directions near the lobby doors Thursday evening, an Athens-Clarke police officer said a man sprinted past him, ran to the reception desk and then tried to burst through the locked doors of the hotel’s administrative offices.

The man, later identified as 21-year-old Julian A. Rios, then ran to the concession area of the hotel on East Washington Street and tried to break through the glass doors of a cooler, according to a police report. The officer grabbed Rios as he again tried to break into the cooler. He noted in his report that Rios had a “blank stare” and was sweating.

Witnesses said they had earlier seen Rios running in circles inside the hotel’s parking garage.

BJ was rewards for his assistance:

After joining in the fray, Van Gundy remembers feeling the man’s breath on his arm and thinking he might get bitten.

Van Gundy’s efforts were rewarded.

While at the convention, he pulled out a junior officer’s sticker badge, peeled it off and slapped it to his jacket lapel.

He was sporting his badge this weekend. Way to go, BJ!


  1. Charlie says:

    I tried to avoid writing about the GOP races where I could. As such, I didn’t do endorsements before hand, but I’ve known BJ a long time, and he had my vote on the first ballot. He posted a note this afternoon on Facebook about the race, and this is what class looks like:

    A POST CONVENTION open letter to the GA GOP Convention Delegates, my family and friends.

    So it’s over. This run for Chairman of the Georgia Republican Party was unsuccessful. The race and effort was fun and worthwhile however. I cannot begin to express the incredible number of new VERY GOOD friends that I made along the way and was enlightened regarding some already established relationships. I’d like to think this is now time to take a deep breath and relax… and I will. For a short time. I will then be ready to move ahead and continue with my efforts to assure that my children and theirs live in a free and opportunity filled future.

    I want to say THANK YOU to all of the delegates that voted for me, as well as those that did not, for their dedication to the Republican Party itself. If I decide to seek leadership in the future, I hope that I can work with both groups to earn their support and vote.

    After all of the speeches have now ended and you’ve cleared your email inbox of campaign materials and your kitchen counters of mail pieces what is still important remains the same as before the State Convention and the campaigns leading up to it:

    God, Family and Country.

    I can honestly say that even with losing in Athens, that I am still the luckiest man in the world. My wife is amazing. My children are blessings that I can’t thank God enough for. I cannot ever begin to express how important they are to me in what I do.

    First let me tell you a bit about my wife Christy. She is truly the heart, soul, and CEO, of our household. Our oldest daughter Whitney was about 3 years old when I came home from work on a Friday evening, after having listened to Dr. Laura lecture me one more time, and asked my wife to stay home with Whitney rather than working. She didn’t have to be told twice and had me sign a contract so I wouldn’t back out come Monday morning. We have never looked back or regretted that decision. A couple of years ago, and 3 additional children later, I got a license plate for Christy’s minivan that sums up my feelings and appreciation for everything she does. It simply says: UBERMOM. Thanks Christy.

    My children are four people I cannot stop gushing over. My oldest daughter, Whitney, will be a competition cheerleader in her freshman year at Columbus State University next season. My second daughter, Avery, had her own campaign for Student Council Vice President this year (she also lost) and has proven to be a brilliant musician and leader in her JLC class. I attend as many baseball games as I possibly can for my sons, Cardin and Reagan, who is named after…well, you know who. I actually try to be that father that embarrasses his kids because I dote on them so much.

    Be careful about giving me a chance to talk about any of them further. I could go on and on.

    None of this is to say that you should have voted for me because I love my family. Each of the candidates have families they love. But remember this: As we go forward, let us all keep true to a deeper motivation for what you do as a political activist than just being active in politics. Maybe it’s your family that stands above the rest, or maybe this is a career that you just enjoy having.

    Whatever your motivation, ensure that your actions reflect what is important to YOU.

    Chairman Padgett has a Herculean task ahead of him as we transition into the future. I congratulate him on his win and pledge to help when he asks.

    God. Family. Liberty. Career. None of these things exist in a bubble. Let them motivate you to stay active with the Party for the betterment of your State and Country. More importantly, let them inspire you to protect our conservative values. As an American and a Georgian, we owe it to the generations to come.

    Once again. Thank you very much for all your kind words before AND after the convention. I’ll see you on the campaign trail…

  2. saltycracker says:

    Nice post, nice guy….but in today’s world:


  3. Doug Deal says:

    BJ had my vote and it is a shame that one of the “candidates” had to put a bit of a stain on the event.

    I would like to see a rule change that does not allow a “candidate” to speak in favor of another and drop out before any voted being cast. Who knows if it had an effect on the outcome or not, but it is clearly unethical. Basically, what every candidate should do, if this is acceptable, is run a shell candidate that “drops out” and either endorses their guy or bashes the others. Heck, run 10 of them. There is no cost to run and you can have 50 minutes to bash or support whatever candidate you desire.

    Floor time is for CANDIATES, not shills for someone else.

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