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City council members ‘go green’ in honor of colleague; special election to be held to fill seat of Councilman Larry Green

HOUSTON – Flowers adorn the spot where late councilman Larry Green should be.

“God has chosen to take him home early,” said Councilman Dwight Boykins, District D.

His passing took city leaders by surprise.

“He’s been a friend, a very close friend,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner. “And a fraternity brother.”

Green’s body was found at his condominium in the 1300 block of Old Spanish Trail Road around 11 a.m. Tuesday by officers who were responding to requests for a welfare check. His cause of death has not yet been released, but Houston police say there does not appear to be any foul play involved.

Colleagues honored District K’s first city council rep by wearing different shades of his last name.

Councilman Jerry Davis, District B, said, “I knew this morning was going to be tough one. You know, sitting next to this guy for six and a half years.”

No one hid their emotions around the horseshoe as colleagues and staff shared their memories.

Councilwoman Amanda Edwards, At-Large 4, said, “I don`t know many people who loved the community the way that he did and the community responded to it in kind.”

“We often tried to figure out who was Batman who was Robin,” Davis said. “According to him, he was always Batman.”

Councilman Jack Christie, At-Large 5, said, “When he and Jerry endorsed me in my race, that was a gutsy move. He got a lot of flack from his constituents, and I’ll always remember that.”

“When you drive through District K, you see the reflection of Council Member Green,” said his chief of staff, Donald Perkins. “From mini murals to 3000+ trees to those streetlights you see on South Main 10 years after it was built. It was Councilman Green that pushed and advocated for those things.”

Councilman Mike Laster, District J, said, “I choose to remember him as ever young. I choose to remember him as ever passionate. As a mentor and a friend and I praise God that he is now walking with the angels and with his mama.”

“There are some people who take life and there are some people who are value added to life,” said Mayor Turner. “He is value added. Very much value added.”

Boykins said, “He will be remembered as very smart, intelligent, very reserved. But if it’s an issue he is focused on, infrastructure, transportation type issues, he was on it.”

A special election will be held May 5 to fill Green’s empty seat.  Despite heavy hearts, his staff plans to conduct business as usual, under unusual circumstances.

After learning of Green’s death, the mayor released the following statement:

“I am shocked and grieving over the untimely death of Houston Council Member Larry Green. But one person’s feelings are secondary to the fact that all of Houston has lost a groundbreaking advocate for equality, economic opportunity and neighborhood safety.

“Larry Green was the first and only District K council member following the south/southwest district’s creation for the 2011 municipal elections. He was the right person to give definition to this new alliance of neighborhoods and businesses: A hard worker. Not a grandstander. He shared in the economic advances and public safety strides of the district without taking the credit for himself. ‘We’ have fought together ‘to build up the economy of District K,’ he wrote on his campaign web site.

“Council Member Green was fond of pointing out that his council district had more undeveloped land than any other and was therefore ‘filled with opportunities.’ Well so was he, and part of this tragedy is that he is no longer with us to follow through in his uniquely industrious way.

“He advocated persistently for all business people to have a fair shot at doing business with city government, such as for construction and supply vending. That focus of his, he said, was ‘so that every business owner has an opportunity to do business with the city – regardless of their age, race, sex, sexual orientation or distinguishing factor.’

“Council Member Green captured the essence of being an enlightened public servant for Houston. My heart goes out to his family, his colleagues and all city residents.”

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