Former Mayor Pete Dames passed away this morning at 12:40 a.m. MST in Arizona after apparently suffering a stroke there last week while visiting family.

It is with an extremely heavy heart that I am having to report this as I sit here staring at my keyboard upon hearing the news.

He was involved in so many civic, service and educational organizations that it would be impossible to list them all here; his contributions to the community are enormous.

Mr. Dames was on the La Mirada City Council from 1994-2010, serving as mayor four times.

He also was the freshman coach for La Mirada High football for many years; past-president and a charter member of the La Mirada Athletic Council; lifetime member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and Knights of Columbus; the 605 football classic and board member of the La Mirada Youth Foundation and a main organizer of the "4 La Mirada Kids" carnival for the Kiwanis Club of La Mirada.

Pete Dames, second from right, with the La Mirada Olive Fest planning committee in 2014

Recently, he spearheaded the movement to form the Veterans Council in La Mirada, which now organizes the city's three annual veterans events.

His involvement and contribution to the La Mirada Olive Fest (2010-2015) and the professionalism he brought to the table, took that event to an all new level.

He had successful open-heart surgery in July of 2008 and was 85.

Mr. Dames is survived by his wife Gerrie, son Peter and daughter-in-law Yuki, daughter Beth Somers and son-in-law Adam, along with grandchildren Jack and Emma (Beth/Adam) and Timothy (Peter/Yuki).

We will try to provide details of any arrangements soon.