City Mourns Death of West Chicago Mayor Mike Kwasman
Kwasman was surrounded by his family after he had a heart attack on Saturday. He was 65.
The mayor of West Chicago has died, the city announced Tuesday afternoon.
“This is a tremendous loss to the citizens of West Chicago and to all who knew Mayor Kwasman,” said Ruben Pineda, West Chicago's Third Ward Alderman and Deputy Mayor. “He was not only a great leader, but also a great friend.”
Pineda’s sentiments were echoed by City Administrator Michael Guttman.
“His record of public service and his countless contributions as Mayor of the city he loved will serve as a legacy to future generations," Guttman said. "We will carry on his vision into the future, but first we mourn his loss.”
Kwasman has been West Chicago's mayor since December 2006. He was first appointed as acting mayor, then won elections in April 2007 and 2009. Before that he was Alderman of West Chicago's Fifth Ward for six years, according to the City of West Chicago website.
Kwasman owned and managed his own business. He was a West Chicago resident for 23 years, the city's website said.
Kwasman lived with his wife Crystal and Harry, their Wheaten Terrier, in the Forest Trails neighborhood of the city.
Arrangements have not been finalized but will be subsequently released.
"A Dedicated Elected Official"
West Chicago city leaders and residents paused Tuesday to remember the mayor they treasured so much.
"With the passing of West Chicago's Mayor Mike Kwasman ... our community (not just West Chicago) lost a dedicated elected official and the environment lost a friend," wrote Don Kirchenberg, voluntary chairman for Friends of the Great Western Trails.
Kirchenberg recalled Kwasman's continued support of the trails, first as an alderman and then as mayor. Kwasman provided resources to help haul away trash on the trails and directed an effort to stop a power company's continued cutting of the trail trees.
"My best wishes go out to his family, friends and coworkers," Kirchenberg wrote on Patch.
Kwasman connected with his city in numerous ways, including through Coffee with the Mayor, an informal program held every third Saturday morning at West Chicago City Hall.
Patch will post information on memorial arrangements as they are released.