BOONEVILLE, Ky. (LEX 18) — Booneville's longest serving mayor, Charles Long, has died at the age of 99.
He was that state's longest serving mayor and had been in office since 1959. The Kentucky League of Cities paid tribute to Long saying, "He was a true public servant and had a wonderful, kind disposition."
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell released the following statement, "For many in Booneville, the steady leadership of Mayor Charles Long was all they ever knew. When this Navy veteran first set out for elected office, he did so with a genuine desire to help people. For six decades, Charles was a true hero and public servant. His commitment to public service animated his life and now leaves behind a strong legacy. In watching the UK Wildcats or advocating for his neighbors, my friend brought a kindness and a passion to everything he did. I always enjoyed working with Charles on projects for Owsley County, and I know Elaine and I join this community in remembering his remarkable life. We send our condolences to his family and friends."
Long was a WWII veteran who loved his town, his country, and the Kentucky Wildcats.
City Commissioner Noah Noble told LEX 18 water lines reach more than 95% of the county thanks to Long.
"If you turn on a water spicket in Owsley County, you can thank Charles Long for it," said Noble. "That's his claim to fame, well just for the government. The man, Charles Long, is an amazing story within itself."
Long would have turned 100 in October. His visitation will be held Aug. 7 at Booneville Funeral Home in Booneville from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. Funeral services will be held Aug. 8 at the Booneville Presbyterian Church beginning at 2 p.m.
Interment will follow at Shepherd Memorial Cemetery.
City officials say that they have notified the secretary of state about Long's Death and will have one month to name his replacement.