FINDLEY LAKE – A member of the Chautauqua County Legislature and former Chairman has passed away.
Findley Lake resident David Himelein (R-District 18) died on Friday due to health issues.
Himelein joined the legislature via appointment to the District 21 seat in 2010 and was first elected in 2011. He also held onto a seat in the legislature following the redistricting of 2013, which combined his district with another to create District 18, which covers the towns of Mina, Sherman and Chautauqua Lake. During that year’s election he had to run in a primary against fellow legislator and Republican Fred Croscut, who he defeated via a primary. In 2016 and 2017 he served as chairman of the Legislature.
In addition to the legislature, he was also a life member and past Chief of the Findley Lake Fire Department, a member and previous chairman of the Chautauqua County Fire Chiefs Association, a member and previous chairman of the Chautauqua County Fire Advisory Board, a member of the NYS Fire Chiefs Association, a member of the Olive Lodge #575 Masons of Sherman, the Eastern Stars of Sherman, and served on the Mina-Findley Lake Historical Society.
With Himelein’s passing, the legislature will be down to 18 members. It’s not known if the seat will be filled before the November election, but that is an option for the legislature’s vacancy committee.
Himelein was part of a crowded field of candidates running in District 18 this year. Not only did he file a petition for reelection, but there were two others who also filed as Republican. The other two are Richard Syper and William Ward – who’ve both submitted petitions to run for that party. Ward is also the lone Democratic Candidate.
Meanwhile, the funeral for Himelein will be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, April 10, 2019 at the Findley Lake United Methodist Church, 2862 N. Rd, Findley Lake, NY 14736. The Rev. David Cooke will officiate. Burial will be in the Mina Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9th at the Freay Funeral Home in Mayville, 139 S. Erie St., where an Eastern Stars service will be held at 7:30 p.m. To leave a remembrance or to post condolences to the family, please visit freayfuneralhome.com.