AMES - Recently elected village mayor Richard E. Wilday Sr. died unexpectedly Saturday, according to local officials.
Michael McMahon, a trustee of the village, said Wilday had developed asthma in recent weeks, and that might have contributed to his death.
Wilday, 69, had served several terms as a trustee on the Village Board and owned a farm where he harvested hay.
Wilday was about to receive a commemorative pin for his 45 years of service with the Ames Volunteer Fire Department, according to McMahon.
McMahon said Wilday was a real community leader and a good friend who lived across the street from him.
"We spoke many times during the week," he said. "He was a super good guy, well liked."
According to McMahon, he and fellow village Trustee Martin Wilcox will need to appoint a new mayor to serve the remainder of the term.
Calling hours for Wilday will take place today from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Lappeus Funeral Home in Sharon Springs, with a memorial service at 7 p.m.