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Following the mayor’s passing, the city names a temporary mayor



Pocahontas, Arkansas – Following the passing of Mayor Keith Sutton on Thursday, a meeting was called at Pocahontas City Hall.

The city council decided to designate Keith Futrell as the acting mayor at the meeting. The council also decided to call a special election for May to choose the candidate to serve out the remainder of Mayor Sutton’s term.

On December 24, Keith Sutton, 60, went away at the St. Bernards Medical Center in Jonesboro.

“Devastated, to say the least. We’re going to try and carry on and do what he wanted us to do,” Pocahontas Fire Chief Scott Baltz said.

A longtime buddy of Mayor Sutton was the fire chief.

Baltz clarified that the mayor’s health problems contributed to his demise.

“The mayor did have an illness with cancer that he was getting dealt with,” Baltz explained. “Had some other health issues that came up and succumbed to those.”

Baltz considers the mayor’s lasting contributions to the town and his legacy.

“I would take him for chemo treatments at six in the morning. We’d get back by nine, and he would go to work for the city,” Baltz added.

Not just the fire chief has pleasant memories of the mayor in mind.

Michelle Teel, the acting mayor and municipal clerk, stated that the mayor wished to improve both the quality of life inside and outside the city limits.

“He just wanted to provide something the community could use as a whole and that others could come to Pocahontas and enjoy as well. It was a labor of love,” Teel stated.

Teel hopes that whoever takes Sutton’s place long-term holds the same priorities that he had.

“Obviously, we realize there is work to be done for the city, but it can be done in a compassionate way, and I think that’s who he was. That describes him as a friend and a mayor,” Teel explained.

McNabb Funeral Home held the visitation on Thursday, Dec. 28, from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

A memorial service will be held on Friday, the following day, at 10 a.m. at the Randolph County Development Center on the Black River Technical College Campus.

The city announced on Facebook the offices will be closed on Friday to honor Sutton’s passing and allow city associates and community to attend the memorial.



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