Earlier today, former Riverside County 4th District Supervisor Roy Wilson died.
Only on Friday, did he unexpectedly resigned his board seat for health reasons. Early this spring, he had hip replacement surgery.
Board Chairman and 3rd District Supervisor Jeff Stone expressed his sorrow and grief for Wilson and solace for his family.
"He passed this evening and is no longer suffering," Stone said. "Even in his final days at home, he was thinking of his district."
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is responsible for appointing a successor to Wilson. this person will complete the term and stand for re-election in 2010. Wilson sudden declining health was unexpected to everyone. He was already building a warchest for his re-election campaign when his announcement Friday stunned the Coachella Valley and all of Rifverside County, too.
On Tuesday, the county board (with Supervisor Bob Buster absent) endorsed State Sen. John J Benoit (R 37) to replace Wilson. He had recommended Benoit strongly in his resignation letter and the board was more than happy to comply with Wilson's request.
The following is from the county's press release this evening:
"Supervisor Roy Wilson, whose long career as an educator and public servant earned respect and admiration far beyond the region he represented, passed away peacefully at his south Palm Desert home Wednesday evening surrounded by family and friends.
"Colleagues and county staff were heartbroken by the news, which came less than a week after Supervisor Wilson abruptly announced that a sudden decline in health had forced him to step down from the Board of Supervisors. Details regarding services are pending, and no information about the cause of Supervisor Wilson’s passing was available Wednesday.
"Supervisor Wilson’s family thanked the entire community for its outpouring of support and affection since his resignation. Supervisor Wilson, as most know, was a very private person. It was his request that the media and public respect the family's privacy during this period."