Following the untimely death of Morgan County Councilman Don Mathews, the county is seeking to fill his vacancy representing District 5 in the North Morgan area.
“Morgan County has truly lost an amazing representative,” Councilwoman Ronda Kippen said. “He took his role as a council member to heart. He will truly be missed.”
“He was beloved,” said Councilman Lyle Nelson. “He was a hard worker and will sorely be missed.”
The County Council has made public its plans to appoint Mathew’s replacement. Those residing in the North Morgan District 5 area who have been registered voters in the county for at least one year can file a nomination petition with the county clerk by Dec. 27. Independent candidates must have 25 registered voters sign their petition.
Please see the legals section for a complete description of District 5.
Mathews was appointed to the Morgan County Council in July of 2010 when Councilman David Gardner resigned. In the November 2010 election, he won the four-year District 5 seat over opponent Austin F. Turner.
“He did a great deal of service for the community. His time on the council was well spent,” said County Counci Chairwoman Tina Kelley. “He served the community well.”
Mathews assignments on the council included the airport, budget, contracts, community and human services, fairboard, fairgrounds, fleet, public works, purchasing, redevelopment, and Wasatch Front Community Council.
Many government leaders throughout the county agree that Mathews had a particular approach.
“He was a man of few words so when he spoke up you knew what he had to say was important and he felt strongly about it. I loved to watch him stew over different issues we were faced with. You could tell he did not take anything lightly,” Councilwoman Ronda Kippen said. “Don was an amazing problem solver. He lead by example. He was very determined to make sure he left the County in a better situation than before he was elected to the council.”
“He was always pleasant, willing to hear all options and would spend the necessary time to study the issues in depth,” Morgan City Mayor Jim Egbert said. “We appreciated his calmness and expertise during these discussions.”
“Don was so good to listen to everyone’s opinion, details, and then to always vote as to what he felt was best for Morgan County,” Councilman Ned Mecham said.
“Don made working on the county Council not just bearable but enjoyable,” Councilman Robert Kilmer said. “Don was a pleasure to work with. He cared for the community and the people of Morgan.”
Many expressed their appreciation of Mathew’s sense of humor.
“His laughter would always put a smile on my face,” Mecham said.
“I loved it when I could finally crack through his serious exterior and I could get a real heartfelt laugh out of him,” Kippen said.
Government leaders are expressing concern for the family Mathews leaves behind.
“Don was an all-around good guy,” Egbert said. “We wish his family well as they face this very trying challenge in their lives.”
“He is a wonderful man, and will be greatly missed,” Mecham said. “I would like to extend my deepest sympathy to his lovely wife Cheri and to their family. I will miss him.”
“He will be greatly missed and I would like to thank his family for allowing him to share his time with us,” Kilmer said.
“I would like to thank Don’s family for sacrificing time away from their husband, father and grandfather so that he could serve Morgan County as a council member,” Kippen said. “My thoughts and prayers are with his family. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to get to know him.”