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Four qualify on first day in Forest Park special election

By Kathy Jefcoats

kjefcoats@news-daily.com

FOREST PARK — Four people qualified Monday in the March 19 special election to pick a new mayor and Ward 1 council member.

Sparkle Adams and John Finch threw their hats in the ring for mayor. Adams resigned her Ward 1 seat Feb. 1 to make the run.

Finch, 54, is a fleet technician and mechanic with Army Air Force Exchange Service. He's lived in Forest Park his whole life. Divorced, Finch has three children and three granddaughters.

He coached neighborhood baseball and softball teams in Forest Park for more than 20 years. Finch said if he's elected mayor, he will be a dedicated public servant.

"That's something that has been missing in our leadership for a while," he said.

Qualifying in the Ward 1 seat were Tommy Smith and Kimberly James. James filed an ethics complaint against former Mayor Corine Deyton last fall. Deyton, who was enduring health issues that led to her retirement from office, was accused of being derelict in her duties.

The complaint went nowhere when Deyton retired Oct. 15.

Smith and James lost to Adams in Ward 1 in 2009.

Qualifying continues every day this week until Friday at 4:30 p.m.

Check back for updates or pick up a copy of the Clayton News Daily.