Last night was Councilwoman Veronica Airey-Wilson's last meeting. She has applied for a voluntary retirement incentive program, and her last day will be Dec. 31. Because the council voted to cancel its Dec. 27 meeting, last night was her final meeting.
Supporters came out in droves and dominated the public comment portion just before the council's meeting at 7 p.m. with well wishes. Some carried signs with messages of gratitude for her service over the years. Airey-Wilson retires after 17 years on the council.
Her nephew, Corey Brinson, is a candidate to fill the seat. Brinson is one of the people who spoke at last night's meeting. He called Airey-Wilson "the reason I'm in politics."
"I was in 8th grade when she started this journey," Brinson, 30, recalled.
"I remember many evenings coming by your house and you weren't there because you were here [at city hall]," he said of his aunt.
Steven Bonafonte, a lawyer for Travelers insurance, also is a candidate for Airey-Wilson's seat. Council members said they will likely vote for a replacement in January.