By Errol Castens/NEMS Daily Journal
POTTS CAMP – Most flags in Potts Camp stood at half-mast on Thursday, signifying the shock and sadness that descended on the town after Mayor Ricky Lesure died Wednesday night.
Lesure, who had been mayor of the small community in southeast Marshall County since 2009, was in front of Brett Whaley’s NAPA store when he was struck by a van.
“Ricky had been working on his mother’s car … and had come down here, what I was told, to get some parts,” Whaley said. “He lost his little tool box – that’s it sitting there in the floor – and he pulled into the driveway here to pick it up. Another guy stopped in the other lane over there and got out to help him pick it up.”
Whaley was outside helping a customer when he heard the crash and was one of the first on the scene.
“It was just a pure accident – one of those freak things,” he said. “It was just one of those bad things that happen.”
Lesure was airlifted to a Memphis trauma center, where he died. Good Samaritan Jimmy Foreman was transported to North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo, where he was listed in good condition late Thursday afternoon. No word was available on whether charges would be filed against the driver of the van.
People from Potts Camp and the surrounding area remembered Lesure fondly and often the day after his death.
“He was a very nice young man, even when he was in school,” Joan Gurley said. “He wasn’t one of these kids who get in trouble or cause problems.” She recalled the several annual fun days Lesure had organized for the town’s kids, where he’d cooked donated food and provided games.
Lesure was “a people person,” Vice Mayor Mary Houston said. “When he took that office as mayor, he said his job was to do everything he could do for the people. He’ll be missed.”
Houston said Lesure, who leaves behind a wife and son, took a special interest in improving recreation in Potts Camp.
Jimmy Isom said of Lesure, a lifelong friend, “I can’t say nothing bad about him. If somebody says something bad about him, they didn’t know him.”
Whaley said Lesure was “a hard-working, honest, dependable guy – a good person, a good mayor.”
Funeral arrangements for Mayor Lesure are incomplete with J.F. Brittenum and Son Funeral Home in Holly Springs.