Thursday, October 13, 2011
Two killed in separate accidents
By SUE WATSON
October 5 was a day of tragic loss in Marshall County.
Ricky Lesure, the mayor of Potts Camp for two years, died at The Med in Memphis, Tenn., following an afternoon accident on Highway 178 in Potts Camp.
Residents were shocked at the death of their mayor.
Daphne Foster, deputy city clerk, and her husband, Roger, were big fans of Mayor Lesure.
“I can’t believe it,” D. Foster said. “It’s so hard to believe. I talked with Ricky three times that day. The last time he answered and said, ‘Hey, Mom.’
The flag was lowered to half-staff in town Thursday, a day of mourning, and a quickly arranged candlelight vigil was held Thursday night.
“Ricky would have been so pleased, the whole town together like that,” D. Foster said about the service. “That was his goal.”
D. Foster was among some of the first to the scene of the accident and said Lesure was alive.
She called the mayor’s wife at The Med soon after the accident and felt that she already knew. Dorothy Lesure was at the hospital with her nephew, who was injured in a wreck that morning near Byhalia that claimed the life of a truck driver and stopped traffic in both lanes of four-lane Highway 78 for hours. Her husband was being airlifted to The Med.
“I said, Dorothy, we need to pray; it’s not good,” D. Foster said. “Dorothy called later and said, ‘The doctor was just here. He has head injuries, a shoulder and leg injury. The next 10 minutes will tell.’”
Jimmy Foreman was transported by air to North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo with injuries. He was a passenger in a truck driven by Steve Price. Foreman had gotten out of the truck to help Lesure pick up tools when a van driven by John Garrison was passing by. The van struck the men after it had passed the truck occupied by Price.
The mayor had not decided whether he would seek another term. The 47-year-old drove an 18-wheeler during the day and took up town business at night.
D. Foster said, “He told me, ‘If I feel like I have done a good job and am making progress with the town and I am not burned out, I may run again.’ He was a fine Christian man.”
Roger Foster, who worked with the mayor to put out the flags on holidays, said Lesure will be missed.
“He was very patriotic and a very dear friend,” R. Foster said. “He was a tremendous mayor, willing to listen, had a good mind and made decisions.”
“It’s hard to believe,” said District 5 supervisor Ronnie Joe Bennett. “I knew him all his life. He treated everybody right. He was straight up and a real good friend.
“He did a lot for Potts Camp getting the fall festival for the city and the park fixed up. He loved to do stuff for the town and would work all day and weed-eat around the pipes in town after work. He will be sorely missed. He was a great guy. I hate it.”
Vice-mayor Mary Houston said the whole town was sad after the accident and in shock.
“He was such a great guy,” she said. “I’m going to miss him. He was just like a child of mine.”
Dorothy Lesure praised the Potts Camp community and The Med staff for the outpouring of support during this time of crisis.
“I am just elated at the words of outpouring support,” she said. “It just swept me off my feet – the young people in Potts Camp. And the fire and police departments and the staff at the Memphis Med were very supportive – outstanding. Town hall has been outstanding. Flick’s Amoco has been outstanding. I am blessed to have the support I have been given.”
The funeral service for Mayor Lesure is Thursday of this week at 2 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Potts Camp. For his complete obituary, click here.
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