GALLIPOLIS — It was as though an earthquake hit Gallipolis Wednesday as the shocking news spread of the sudden and unexpected death this morning of a young woman who was arguably Gallia County's greatest business advocate.
Gallia County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lorie Falls Neal, age 40, fell ill suddenly at her workplace, located on State Street in Gallipolis, and was rushed to Holzer Medical Center by ambulance. She did not survive. The details regarding the cause of Neal's death are unclear at this time.
What is clear is that Gallia County will feel this loss strongly and for a long time to come.
“They say no one is irreplaceable,” said Marianne Campbell, who has worked with Neal at the Chamber office for more than a decade, “but I'm here to tell you, all that Lorie has done for this area and for the people here … that child cannot be replaced.”
Neal, originally from Reedsville, had served as the Director of the Gallia County Chamber of Commerce since July 2000.