Page last updated at 09:41 GMT, Thursday, 9 April 2009 10:41 UK

Dead mayor re-elected by US town


Voters in a small town in the US state of Missouri have re-elected their popular mayor to a fourth term, several weeks after he died of a heart attack.

Harry Stonebraker died at the age of 69 in March - after ballot papers had been printed and absentee voting in the town of Winfield had begun.

He won by a landslide, securing 90% of the vote in the 723-population town.

Winfield will appoint a temporary mayor to serve until a special election is held in April 2010.

Lincoln County Clerk Elaine Luck likened the outcome to Missouri's US Senate race in 2000, which was won by Democrat Mel Carnahan who had died in a plane crash weeks earlier.

She said Harry Stonebraker was a popular mayor who had helped lead the community after flooding in 2008 damaged dozens of homes and large tracts of farmland.

"I figured he'd win because he seemed to get even more popular after he died, just like Carnahan," she was quoted by the Associated Press as saying.

Mr Stonebraker was a life-long resident of the Winfield area, some 50 miles (80km) north-west of St Louis.

He was a retired construction superintendent who had nearly completed his third two-year term as mayor, AP said.

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