KENTWOOD, MI – Drive-by planned for former Kentwood mayor

Published: Friday, June 08, 2012, 8:23 AM

By Matt Vande Bunte |

KENTWOOD, MI – With former Mayor Richard Root’s “cancer journey nearly coming to an end on this earth,” members of the Grand Valley Corvette Association plan Sunday to honor him with a drive by. After a 1:30 p.m. rendezvous in the parking lot of an old Family Fare at 52nd Street and Eastern Avenue SE, members will cruise past Root’s home on Vicksburg Court SE.

Root last month announced that he was retiring after 30 years of public service, including the last nine as mayor, to continue battling cancer. His last official day in office was Monday, and the City Commission on Tuesday appointed Richard Clanton to complete Root’s term through 2013.

Root almost four years ago was diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma. Clanton on Thursday told the Grand Valley Metropolitan Council that Root’s health is ailing and “it does not look good.” Family members have posted updates on a “RickRoot” page at An entry Thursday states that Root’s cancer journey is “nearly coming to an end on this earth.”

The entry also states that “up until the last month or so, he continued to work as well as meet all the city commission and other evening commitments. Even though, we knew as his family, that he was in pain, he did not let it slow him down as much as he could prevent it anyway.


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