St. Louis Alderman Greg Carter dies in truck accident
U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay Jr. and St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay are among the region’s political leaders mourning the death early Wednesday of St. Louis Alderman Gregory J. Carter.
Carter, D-27th Ward, died in a traffic accident on Highway 370 in St. Charles County, while driving a United Parcel Service tractor-trailer. According to official reports and his website, Carter’s tractor-trailer ran into the back of a Fed Ex tractor-trailer that had stopped for an accident.
Carter, 54, had been a UPS driver since 1984.
Carter had been an alderman since 1993 and was a member of one of the city’s most prominent Democratic political families. He was the son of the late state Sen. Paula Carter, D-St. Louis, who had been a powerful political leader until her death in late 2001. His nephew is state Rep. Chris Carter, D-St. Louis.
Clay said, “Like the Clays, the Carters have a remarkable history of serving St. Louis. The city of St. Louis has lost an exceptional public servant, and I have lost a dear friend.”
The congressman had been with Carter last weekend, a Clay spokesman said.
Slay posted on his blog that he had informed city employees Wednesday morning of his death. A spokesman said the mayor also has ordered that the city flags be flown at half-staff in all city buildings.
“Greg was liked by all those who knew him,” Slay wrote. “Numerous awards testify to the respect in which he was held by our community: The Trailblazer Award from the 100 Black Men; Chairman Awards from the Human Development Corporation; Lifetime Achievement Award from the St. Louis Teachers and School Related Personnel Union, Local 420; the Walbridge Community Education Lifetime Achievement Award; the Achievement Award of the Missouri Waste Coalition; Community Services Award from Legal Services of Eastern Missouri; and many others.”
Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed called Carter a personal friend and “one of the biggest advocates for fairness and equality… Alderman Carter was a charismatic, hard working, and determined public official. He was well-liked by all members and staff of the Board of Aldermen.
“Greg passionately worked on matters of health and wellness for all city residents as former chairman of the Health and Human Services Committee,” Reed said. “His dedication to his constituents was second to none and his leadership as chairman of the Public Safety Committee was exemplary. Alderman Carter will be greatly missed.”
U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan, D-St. Louis, said in a statement, “Sometimes, politics can be a tough business, but I have never met anyone more pleasant, accommodating and personable than Greg Carter. He always welcomed me and my family into the 27th with a kind word, a glad hand and a proud outlook on his city. … We will miss his smile, his energy and his spirit of public service and giving back to his community.”
U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., also offered her condolences.
“...I know that Greg’s mother, the late Missouri Senator Paula Carter, would be incredible proud of his service to the St. Louis community," McCaskill said in a statement. "Greg was a smiling, competent, and all around wonderful guy and I join folks across Missouri in expressing deep sorrow at this loss. The Carter family has done so much for so many, and my prayers go out to them and to all those touched by this tragedy.”
(Start of update) The funeral will be held August 11 at Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church, 5515 Dr. Martin Luther King Drive in St. Louis.
A viewing will be held at the church at 8 a.m., with services beginning at 10 a.m. (End update)