The City of Surprise recently noted the passing of long-time West Valley resident, U.S.veteran and District 2 Council member Jim Hayden.
Hayden, who passed away on Dec. 20, started his service on the Surprise City Council in 2016 when he filled a remaining term for the District 2 council seat. He won the seat in the primary election of August 2016 and began his four-year term in January 2017.
“Jim was a gentle soul and humble public servant,” Surprise Mayor Sharon Wolcott said in a press release. “Surprise was most fortunate to have him amongst us. The Valley has lost a dear friend, but his legacy of service is larger than life itself, and one that will continue to impact us all.”
Hayden, who served as an adjunct professor at Glendale Community College where he taught fire science and emergency medical technicians, also worked as fire fighter and EMT with the Glendale Fire Department for 22 years. He was strong advocate for public safety issues, serving as chairman of the Surprise Public Safety Retirement Board.
A Vietnam War veteran, Hayden served in the U.S. Air Force for 20 years working to train pilots.
Hayden and his wife, Nancy, were 12-year residents of Sun City Grand.