Manchester Mayor Lonnie Norman has passed away this morning according to an announcement by the city.
"We are in mourning today for Mayor Lonnie Norman who passed away this morning after fighting a losing battle with COVID-19," it reads.
"He was instrumental in supporting the construction and operation of the Recreation Complex, Soccer Park, and so much else. He was kind and respectful to all and had Manchester truly in his heart. We will miss him and that smile," the city posted.
Administrators send prayers best wishes
City officials wish Manchester Mayor Lonnie Norman a speedy recovery following his being hospitalized with COVID-19.
Vice Mayor Marilyn Howard read a letter from Norman at Tuesday’s board meeting,
“Mayor Norman,” she said, “would like to express his appreciation for all the calls and prayers regarding his health. The doctors are happy with his recovery an hope to kick him out soon. He asked for continued prayers, and he prays that he will be sitting in his seat on Nov. 3 for the next board meeting. He feels blessed to have a wonderful Board of Mayor and Aldermen and staff in his life.”
Former Vice Mayor and longtime Alderman Ryan French offered the following statement,
“Lonnie Norman is more than a friend and our Mayor. Lonnie is part of our family and has been for as long as I can remember. Our thoughts, prayers, good vibes, and hearts are all with him. He is a fighter and a pretty stubborn man, so we know his fight is going to be relentless. He knows that we love him and he knows that he has the love of our community behind him as well,” French said.
Alderman Mark Messick said, “He has my prayers, most of the people of Manchester feel the same way. We all want to wish him well and hope he gets back soon.”
Alderman Bob Bellamy said, “I certainly hope he gets better and gets back to work soon.”
Alderman Bill Nickels wishes Norman a speedy recovery.
“I love Mayor Norman,” Nickels said.
Alderman Chris Elam shared his fellow administrators’ hopes and prayers.
A city release to local media said that Vice Mayor Marilyn Howard has been in constant communication with the city staff and officials to ensure the seamless operation of city government.
“The city implemented strict measures months ago to mitigate the spread of the virus. Unfortunately, like other cities and businesses, we have had employees impacted by the virus,” it read.
According to city charter, in the event that a mayor is no longer able to perform the duties of office, the appointed vice mayor would fill the position.
“(W)hen the Mayor is absent or unable to discharge the duties of the Mayor’s office, but, in case of a vacancy in the office of Mayor, the Board of Mayor and Aldermen shall fill the vacancy with the Vice-mayor or from the remaining members from the board until the next regular election…,” the charter reads.