Martinsburg City Council accepts resignation of longtime member

October 12, 2007|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - The Martinsburg City Council on Thursday accepted the resignation of longtime Councilman Donald T. Anderson, who has been hospitalized with a life-threatening illness since June, according to his children.

"We know that Dad has enjoyed his terms on City Council," said Theodore C. "Ted" Anderson and Sylvia J. Bradley in an Oct. 11 letter to Mayor George Karos.

"He is proud of the work accomplished with fellow council members, yourself and the city administration. He has considered it an honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Martinsburg."

Anderson, 80, of 604 Linden Lane, served on City Council from 1977 to 1980 and returned to office in the 1990 municipal election. He held an at-large council seat since, according to city records.


Anderson's children, empowered as attorneys-in-fact, said they submitted their father's resignation based on his medical prognosis.

"In keeping with our father's ideology, we have returned his City Council salary for the period of June through October 2007, while he has been incapacitated and unable to work and assist his constituents," Anderson's children said in the letter. The pay amounted to $1,000.

"I never doubted where he was coming from," Karos said after he adjourned City Council's regular meeting.

Considered a confidante and "more than a friend," Karos said Anderson didn't shy from being in the minority on city issues. In fact, at the last regular council meeting Anderson attended in May, he cast the only vote against increasing garbage and curbside collection fees.

"I'm glad that Don Anderson received me as a friend," Third Ward Councilman Max Parkinson said before voting to accept the resignation.

Councilman Gregg Wachtel's voice cracked as he touted Anderson as one of the city's finest citizens to serve the city.

Ward Five Councilwoman Betty Gunnoe said she knew Anderson her entire life and hoped the city would recognize him in an official way as soon as possible.

Fourth Ward Councilman Roger Lewis told Anderson's son, who serves as the city's police chief, to relay "the love and respect" that council members have for the longtime city leader.

After the vote, Karos announced the city would advertise the council seat vacancy and outline how nominations and applications should be submitted to City Hall by Nov. 16. According to code, city residents must be registered to vote, but may reside in any of the municipality's five wards.

After the application deadline, Karos said the City Council would meet in executive session to decide a short list of two or three candidates and then contact the top choice and invite the person to the next council meeting.

The individual selected would serve until June 30, 2008.

The Herald-Mail Articles