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CAROLINA SHORES—Ed Gillin, former chairman of the town planning and zoning board, died last Saturday at the age of 81.
Tribute to Gillin was paid this week by colleagues who recalled his years of service for the town dating back to when it was still merged with the neighboring town of Calabash.
“We have lost a very dear member of our community,” said former town commissioner Kathryn Powell, speaking at Monday’s meeting of the town planning and zoning board on which she presently serves.
Gillin she said, “has been so vital to this town.”
She noted he served a number of years as chairman of the P&Z board and also was a founding member of the community.
“He was always available and helpful with a suggestion, any kind of information he could give you,” she said. “We will be lost without him. He was a kind and gentle man. I for one will miss him.”
“I know it’s a tough time,” added assistant board chairman James Mokrycki, presiding over the meeting. “Our grievances go out to the family; our condolences to the family.”
Gillin resigned from the board in 2006, saying he wanted to devote more time to involvements with his church, Our Lady Star of the Sea in North Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Powell and former town commissioner Jack Elliott, a longtime friend of Gillin’s, noted Gillin never missed meetings, including the last town commission meeting March 4.
Elliott said Gillin had only learned within the past two weeks he was seriously ill with bone marrow and liver cancer.
Gillin initially thought he had a cold infection and was feeling ill from a recent flu shot, Elliott said.
“It’s a blessing for Ed he went the way he did, but it was tough on the family,” Elliott said. “I’m glad he didn’t have to suffer.”
Gillin, he said, was very involved with the town and his church, singing in the choir and directing children’s Catholic classes.
“He’d go out of his way to assist the town,” Elliott said. “He put the town first and himself second. He’s going to be missed. He helped develop a lot of changes in the planning and zoning segment.”
“He was a hard worker and always available to talk,” town administrator Linda Herncane said.
A funeral Mass for Gillin was scheduled for 11 a.m. Wednesday, March 26, at Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church.