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Community remembers Woodland Park mayor

WOODLAND PARK, Colo. (KRDO) -- The Woodland Park community is remembering Mayor Val Carr, who passed away this week after battling COVID-19.

Carr had served as mayor since April 2020 but passed away after a battle that lasted roughly two months.

"I found Val personally to be one of the most warm, gregarious, thoughtful people that I'd ever met," Woodland Park Councilman Jim Pfaff said.

Pfaff moved to Woodland Park a couple of years ago and made fast friends with Carr. He said he was honored to know him and will deeply miss his influence in the city.

"We've been on the verge of some needed change. He was helping to lead that," Pfaff said. "That momentum is very hard to replace, someone that had his institutional knowledge of what this town is about, as well as the drive and determination to help make it better."

Woodland Park City Councilman Robert Zuluaga said Carr had a heart of gold, but his focused and "gruff" approach was sometimes misunderstood. Ultimately, he said Carr took his role as mayor very seriously.

"He saw it as a full-time job, it's volunteer position, but he saw it as a full time position. Val saw that he could make a difference," Zuluaga said.

Carr was active as a volunteer in the community as well. He was a mentor to Justin and Cassie Kimbrell, who said Carr was never too busy to pick up the phone.

"The Natural Grocers just came to town and just opened up, but there weren't any stop signs," Cassie said. "I called him I said, 'You know, I almost got hit.' I think it was the next day he had a temporary stop sign instantly."

Pfaff also remembers Carr as someone who cared deeply for everyone around him, especially his wife.

"It's a horrible, tragic loss, we feel for Sherry, because he loved her so much, and cared for her heart," Pfaff said.

Woodland Park City Council will meet Thursday evening to try and decide who will take over as Mayor. The vote will go to a special election if City Council can't decide.

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