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.
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."
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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.