John Salem's sad farewell
Mayor John Salem
July 31 mayor's last day in office
7/19/2013 6:01:00 AM
By Doug McMurdo
KINGMAN - In an emotional farewell announcement, Mayor John Salem said his last day in office will be July 31.
Reading from a prepared statement, Salem said the decision came with "great sadness," but the choice to leave office mid-term was due to circumstances beyond his control.
"I have chosen to leave Kingman to be closer to my family where we may be better suited to the care of family members," he said.
Salem's elderly parents live in the Phoenix area. In announcing his pending resignation roughly six weeks ago, Salem said his father is battling cancer and his mother doesn't havethe strength or stamina to provide the care he requires.
He had kind words to say to council members, city staff and the people of Kingman.
In good hands
"Over the past five years I have had the honor of serving with three different councils," said Salem. "I have learned so much from my colleagues, as well as what I have learned about myself.
"I will be forever indebted to my colleagues for their wisdom, support and encouragement over the years. I feel as though I am leaving the responsibilities of my office in very capable hands. I am very proud of this council in particular."
Salem said he also owes a debt of gratitude to the city staff and rank-and-file employees.
"I was so fortunate to have been able to serve with all of you," said Salem.
Salem became emotional when he shared warm words for Kingman residents as their mayor and as a neighbor.
"Lastly, I would not be in the station in life that I am without the support of the people of the city of Kingman. You have been so good to me over the last 20 years," he said. "You have supported my family and I in business, recreation, worship and friendship. I am deeply saddened that I must leave you. God bless you all and may God bless the city of Kingman."
Salem leaves office with 17 months remaining on his third two-year term.
Vice Mayor Janet Watson will replace Salem and the City Council will discuss the process of appointing a council member from the community at large at an upcoming meeting.