George Wheeler leaves McK CSD due to illness

Jack Durham
Mad River Union

MCKINLEYVILLE – Due to an ongoing battle with cancer, George Wheeler has resigned from the McKinleyville Community Services District Board of Directors.

“Due to recent medical developments, I will be unable to continue as a MCSD director,” Wheeler wrote in his Dec. 10 resignation letter. “The last five years on the board has been one of the more educational and rewarding endeavors in my life. It is with great regret that I am unable to continue.”

George Wheeler

“For the last 18 years, I have been engaged in a struggle with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma,” Wheeler wrote. “In the last few months, the cancer has transformed into an extremely aggressive version of itself, with multiple hospitalizations that have made it impossible to perform my duties as director.”

Wheeler was reelected to a second term on the board on Nov. 6, less than five weeks before he resigned. He was the top vote getter, with 27.11 percent, for the three open seats, trailed by his fellow incumbent candidates David Couch, with 26.99 percent and Dennis Mayo, with 26.80 percent. All three retained their seats. Challenger Erik “Yahmo Ahqha” Rydberg came in a distant fourth, with 17.72 percent.

The MCSD board met today, Jan. 2 at 7 p.m. at Azalea Hall, 1620 Pickett Rd. to discuss how to fill the vacancy. General Manager Greg Orsini, having discussed the issue with the district’s legal counsel, is recommending that the seat be filled by appointment. 

If the board agreed with the recommendation, applicants would have until Wednesday, Jan. 30 to submit letters of interest to the district. The board would make an appointment at its Feb. 6  meeting and the new board member would be sworn in on March 6.

Concluding his resignation letter, Wheeler wrote “God willing, I will recover even from this and rejoin the work of MCSD from the folding chairs. Thank you to everyone who helped me grow into the job of director.”



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