Richmond, TX – The longest serving mayor in the United States has died after holding his position for 63 years.
Hilmar G. Moore passed away on Tuesday at the ripe old age of 92, having first claimed his mayoral seat in Richmond, Texas in 1949. He had since been consecutively re-elected every two years.
Throughout his tenure, Moore was rarely opposed; fewer than ten candidates stood against him, and, when they did, it usually ended badly for the challenger. The year 1996 was the last time anybody stood against Moore. Said opponent was defeated in a crushing landslide, 337 to 49 votes.
Terry Vela worked alongside Moore for many years and told ABC News:
“[Hilmar was] probably the most honorable man that I have ever met. With his leadership over the past 63 years, he has made this city one of the most vibrant cities in the United States. He has truly done amazing things.”
Richmond’s Justice of the Peace Mary Ward added:
“He was a great leader here in our community.”
The cause of Moore’s death is yet to be confirmed. He leaves behind a wife and two adult children as well as several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
No plans have been made yet for the town to memorialize the US’s longest serving mayor, but Vela notes that he was honored two years ago for reaching the 60-year mark. In 2010, a statue of Moore was erected in Richmond at City Hall Park and dedicated to the mayor.
Richmond today is barely recognizable from the town of 1949 when Moore first became mayor. Down the decades, the city’s population has swollen from around 3,000 people to more than 11,000.
Moore, a fifth-generation Texan, had politics in his blood: His father, John M. Moore, served as the Fort Bend County judge and also as the mayor of Richmond in the 1930s while his grandfather, John Matthew Moore, served a term as mayor from 1905 to 1913.