Maine mayoral candidate dies days before runoff

December 9, 2011 - 5:20 PM

LEWISTON, Maine (AP) — A Maine mayoral candidate who recently announced he had cancer has died just days before a two-way runoff election.

A campaign spokesman says 59-year-old Mark Paradis (PEHR'-uh-dee) died at a hospital Friday of complications from pneumonia.

Paradis was up against Robert Macdonald in Tuesday's runoff in Lewiston, a city of 40,000 residents that's home to Bates College.

Paradis and Macdonald were the top vote-getters in November's five-way non-partisan general election. A runoff was required after no candidate got more than 50 percent of the vote.

Paradis announced Wednesday he was undergoing radiation treatments for an undisclosed type of cancer.

The city clerk says Tuesday's runoff will go on as scheduled.

If Macdonald wins, he'll become mayor. But if Paradis wins, the seat will be declared vacant and a special election open to all candidates will be held.