BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Brockton Mayor Bill Carpenter has died at the age of 62. The father of six children was found dead on Wednesday, according to city officials.
Carpenter, a long-time Brockton resident and three-term mayor first elected in 2013, was dropping his grandson off at a summer program at the Arnone School Wednesday morning when he suffered a medical emergency in his car, the Plymouth District Attorney's office said. The mayor was taken to Good Samaritan Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.
"Our office sends its sincere condolences on the sudden passing of Mayor Carpenter,” Plymouth DA Tim Cruz said in a release.
The mayor's account tweeted out the official statement from the City of Brockton on Carpenter's passing.
"His indefatigable and infectious approach to governing had created unprecedented momentum and urban renewal in the city's downtown," the statement read. "The Mayor was a nationally recognized innovator in substance use treatment, and was also recognized nationally for his advocacy in funding for public education."
Outside Carpenter's office at Brockton City Hall, a woman sat and wept as the late mayor's Chief of Staff, Nick Giaquinto, shook while he announced his boss and friend's death.
"This is Bill Carpenter's administration, and we're gonna keep it moving forward," Giaquinto said.
Several Brockton officials and members of Carpenter's staff spoke to WBZ NewsRadio's Karyn Regal about the popular mayor.
"He was tireless, worked extremely hard on anything and everything, and he put his heart and soul into anything he did," Brockton Fire Chief Michael Williams said. "So many different aspects within the city—development, re-development of our downtown, there was the police department, the fire department. He did everything he could for us, he was just such a team player."
"I felt like I got punched by Mike Tyson," said Carpenter's friend and former Chief of Staff, Bob Buckley.
Giaquinto said his boss was his best friend.
"When you spend so much time with somebody doing good for the city, and you take a look at the city and there's been more progress made over the last few years than there ever has been in this city, it's just a shame," he said.
Local politicians including Gov. Charlie Baker and Sen. Elizabeth Warren gave their condolences upon Carpenter's passing.
Carpenter announced plans to run for re-election in June. "I have officially pulled my nomination papers for re-election as Mayor of the City of Brockton," he wrote. "I’m truly blessed & honored to represent the good people of this City. I’m looking forward to earning your vote this Fall!"
Brockton City Councilor Jean Bradley Derenoncourt, who was running against Carpenter to be mayor, has halted his campaign for the week upon word of Carpenter's death.
Marline Amade volunteered for the Carpenter campaign. Outside the late mayor's office, she was overcome with grief as she summed up the loss the city was feeling.
"We lost a mayor, a friend, a father, an advocate for the opioids community," she said.
WBZ NewsRadio's Karyn Regal (@Karynregal) reports