District 2 Councilmember Jim Hayden passed away this afternoon, following a short illness.
Hayden was first appointed by the Surprise City Council to serve out the remainder of the term for the District 2 council seat in October 2016. That seat was vacated by the incumbent in September 2016. Having won the District 2 seat in the August 2016 Primary Election, his four-year term began on January 1, 2017.
“Jim was a gentle soul and humble public servant,” says Mayor Sharon Wolcott. “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 was a longtime West Valley resident dedicating his life to public service. For 22 years, Jim served on the Glendale Fire Department as a fire fighter and EMT.
He was a Vietnam War veteran and served 20 years in the United States Air Force, where he trained pilots with critical skills needed to survive wartime conditions.
He also served as Adjunct Faculty at Glendale Community College, teaching Fire Science and Emergency Medical Technicians.
Prior to joining council, he served as Chairman of the Surprise Public Safety Retirement Board.
Hayden was an advocate for public safety and the overall Quality of Life for residents.
Jim and his wife Nancy have lived in Sun City Grand for 12 years.