WILMINGTON (CBS) – State Rep. Jim Miceli died on Saturday after collapsing during an event in Wilmington.
Miceli, 82, who has served Wilmington and Tewksbury for decades, went into cardiac arrest during the Wilmington Little League opening day ceremonies at Rotary Park.
Bystanders performed CPR before firefighters arrived on scene. Rotary Park is located across the street from the fire department.
“A couple of spectators helped out. They were able to get him to a leveled position. One of the individuals started CPR,” said Wilmington Town Manager Jeffrey Hull.
Hull said a police officer brought over a defibrillation unit and started working on Miceli but it did not appear to help.
Miceli was rushed to Winchester Hospital, but did not survive. He had represented Wilmington and Tewksbury since 1977.
Gov. Charlie Baker, who knew Miceli for about three decades, called him a gentleman.
“Jim Miceli loved his job. He loved being in the building. He loved representing his community, and he’s somebody who everybody will miss,” Baker said.
Attorney General Maura Healey offered her condolences as well.
Miceli’s colleagues and constituents left behind flowers and even tied a ribbon on the James Miceli Bridge in Tewksbury. The bridge is named for his years of passion for the community.
“He was a man that kind of took care of people. He cared about people more than he cared about himself,” said Peter Fowler of Tewksbury.
Baker said Miceli “was the straightest shooter around and he was a tremendous advocate for his community and for the things that he believed in.”
State Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr, R-Gloucester, said Miceli was a dedicated public servant.
“The way that he passed is very symbolic of the way that he lived. Out there, here in public with families at a Little League event, just so symbolic of his lifetime of service,” Tarr said.
Saturday night, Wilmington and Tewksbury police and Wilmington firefighters took part in a procession to honor Miceli.
Miceli had collapsed at an event in February as well, Wilmington Patch reported.