Guntersville City Council members drowning in sorrow

Guntersville City Council members drowning in sorrow

It's been nearly a week since a Guntersville City Councilman drowned. 74-year-old Bucky Howe died last Wednesday.

Now the city is in the process of replacing the councilman they say simply can't be replaced.

WAFF 48's Rachel Hardman has the details.

There was an empty chair at Monday night's Guntersville City Council meeting. Bucky Howe, the four-term district 6 councilman, passed away October 10th.

Howe's boat drifted away from the brown's creek ramp off Highway 69. He swam to get it and drowned in the process.

Betty Jones says, "It's a very, very sad day for our city. We appreciated Bucky so much and all that he did. He was a wonderful councilman. And very strongly principled, very strongly opinionated. And you always knew were you stood with Bucky and everybody liked Bucky."

The first council meeting without Bucky, was just not the same according to City Clerk Betty Jones.

She says, " It's a very difficult night."  "Bucky is always the first one here for council meetings. and he wasn't the first one here Monday night. He always heads to the coffee pot and usually visits with me a few minutes before the council meeting." a

After a moment of silence, Bucky's seat was declared vacant. The city council now has 60 days to find a successor.

When time is up,  Governor Bob Riley will step in, but Jones doesn't think that will be necessary. People are already coming forward, hoping to serve the last year of Bucky's term.

Shoes, nearly impossible to fill, left empty by a tragic accident.

Betty Jones adds,  "He was a very one-of-a-kind type person. Yes, he'll be big shoes to fill. He really will."

Now it's too soon to say when an appointment will be made.

It could be as early as November 5th, which is the next council meeting.