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Charleston City Council honors Bailey; funeral services set for Tuesday

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Charleston City Council on Monday remembered the impact of Councilmember John Kennedy Bailey with a resolution honoring his service to the city.

Bailey died last Wednesday at the age of 53. He was elected to the Charleston City Council in 2018 as an at-large member, and served as chairman of the Environment and Recycling Committee and member of the Ordinance and Rules Committee.

The council’s resolution, which also noted Bailey’s legal experience and focus on improving Charleston, was placed at Bailey’s desk in the council chamber.

John Kennedy Bailey (Charleston City Council)

“Whoever will replace John will never be able to replace John, and I’m sure that person coming in will know that immediately, ” Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin told MetroNews affiliate WCHS-AM.

Goodwin said it has been difficult accepting Bailey’s death, saying he was an exemplary figure on the city council.

“He felt very passionate about a number of issues, but he never shut the door on you if you wanted to bring something that was different,” she said.

Bailey, a Fairmont native, graduated from Yale University at worked for U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall on Capitol Hill. He later attended the West Virginia University College of Law and worked for the Goodwin and Goodwin law firm, the state Supreme Court and James F. Humphreys & Associates L.C. before starting his own firm in 2006.

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., spoke about Bailey’s impact in a floor speech on Monday in the Senate chamber.

“He will be remembered for his professional abilities as well as his service to his community,” Manchin said. “But most importantly, John will be remembered for his commitment to his children and family, spending much of his time at Jack, Brooks and Lisette’s many activities.”

Funeral services will take place Tuesday at First Presbyterian Church in Charleston. The visitation will begin at 10:30 a.m. with an ensuing service at 11:30 a.m. People will be able to view the funeral at http://firstpresby.com/. A private interment service will take place at Charleston’s Springhill Cemetery.

A celebration of Bailey will be held at the Red Carpet Lounge at 5 p.m.

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