Midlothian City Council member Art Pierard was killed after he was hit by an 18-wheeler late Wednesday, officials say.
Waxahachie police officers were called about 10:30 p.m. to a major accident on North Interstate 35E near South U.S. Highway 77.
They arrived to find Pierard's Ford Mustang stuck in the median facing south and an 18-wheeler stuck in the mud near a northbound exit, police said.
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The initial investigation indicated that Pierard had gotten out of his vehicle after getting stuck and was standing near it when the 18-wheeler left the roadway and hit him, police said.
Two witnesses stopped to help Pierard.
Pierard had been a member of the city council since 2018. In that time, his accomplishments included the passage of the senior citizen's tax freeze and a reduction of the city tax rate, Mayor Richard Reno said.
"He enjoyed visiting with residents and was passionate about Midlothian," Reno said in a written statement. "He brought a unique and positive perspective to the City. We extend our deepest condolences to his family and he will be greatly missed by all that knew him."
Reno along with council member Justin Coffman said Pierard's run in local politics was his second job since retiring from a career as a senior vice president for an electronics company.
They say his first was at Midlothian's Dollar General where he worked for nearly a decade getting to know his neighbors. In fact, Coffman said it was a customer who inspired him to run for council.
“There was a retired widow that came into his store on a fixed income and she was crying about her taxes that she had to pay. He said, I can do something about that," said Coffman.
He said it took Pierard less than a year into his first term to convince the council to pass a freeze on taxable rates for senior citizens that would help.
Pierard leaves behind a wife and daughter.
Funeral arrangements have yet to be announced.