After a battle with brain cancer, and his perseverance to keep the Town functioning despite his progressing limitations, Arcadia Town Supervisor Jon “Chuck Verkey” died on Saturday, September 11, 2021, at home, surrounded by family.
Chuck, who spent his life in Arcadia, graduating from Newark High School in 1973, had a 20 year career with the New York State Troopers, before he retired in 1998.
His service to the community continued with driving bus for Newark Central, and serving as the Code Enforcement Officer for the Town of Arcadia, before he ran and was elected as Arcadia Town Supervisor in 2015, winning a second term in 2019.
With his demise, Deputy Supervisor, Richard VanLaeken has often filled in and supported Chuck at Town board meetings. Richard is expected to be named to the position of Supervisor at a special Town meeting, set for September 29.
“Chuck was a family man, who also cared greatly his community. He worked so hard for Arcadia and always had the citizens’ best interests at heart,” said VanLaeken of his colleague and friend.
VanLaeken has served for two full terms on the Arcadia Town Board, and for a partial term to fill a vacancy which opened up after Town Councilman Gary McIlwain died in 2014.
As owner of Harris Machine in Newark, Richard will now schedule his work duties around his Town duties as Supervisor. He has been a member of the Newark Rotary Club for about 7 years. “The Town Council and staff have been very supportive, said Richard. “I look forward to serving as Supervisor and on the Wayne County Board of Supervisors. My style may be different from Chuck’s, but I will continue to work with our local businesses through my work with the Newark Economic Development Committee, and will work hard for all constituents to keep Arcadia strong.”