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Former Huntington mayor Jean Dean dies

July 18, 2021 GMT

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) — Jean Dean, the first woman to serve as mayor of Huntington, West Virginia, has died.

Dean died Saturday morning, her son Justin Gibson told the Herald-Dispatch. Her health had been deteriorating, he said.

Dean served from from 1993 to 2000. Before that, she was director of administration and finance, a position similar to a city manager.

“She considered it a great honor to serve the people,” Gibson said.

Current Mayor Steve Williams called Dean a “graceful giant.”

Her vision, determination and graceful countenance set a foundation on which we continue to benefit,” Williams said in a statement.

Gibson said his mother was willing to work with representatives in Congress, local business leaders and residents to support the city.

“Whatever she could do to improve the quality of life for the citizens of Huntington, she would give everything to do that,” he said.

Funeral arrangements were pending Sunday.