MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) - UPDATE 12/29/2017: The oldest known active Mayor in Arkansas has passed away at the age of 90.
According to the City of Marked Tree Facebook page, Mayor Mary Ann Arnold died on Thursday, December 21st.
In August, Local 24's Jeni Diprizio sat down with Arnold. Age was just a number for 90-year-old who was running the small northeast Arkansas town. Arnold told Jeni that she ran for the office when she was 86, hoping to make Marked Tree a better place.
According to Emerson Funeral Home's website, a memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Friday at First United Methodist Church in Marked Tree.
For lasting memorials, the family asks that you please consider, Arkansas Children's Foundation, 1 Children's Way, Slot 661, Little Rock, AR, 72202; First United Methodist Church of Marked Tree, 304 Frisco St, Marked Tree, AR, 72365; or Trumann Animal Clinic, Helping PAWS Fund, 1121 Hwy 69W, Trumann, AR, 72472.
A woman in one small delta town is a reminder that age is only a number. It's believed the mayor of Marked Tree, Arkansas, is currently the oldest serving mayor in the state.
Marked Tree is 40 miles northwest of Memphis. If you go to city hall, you'll find Mayor Mary Ann Arnold sitting in the mayor's office.
"I think I'm 18, 20, but I'm 90," said Arnold. She goes to work every day, running the small community of 2500 people.
"The only time I have trouble is when I have a difficult city council meeting and I mumble to myself, ’I asked for this’," said Arnold.
Arnold's been in office four years. At 86-years-old, she ran for the post, hoping to make Marked Tree a better place.
"I felt like it was an opportunity to help get some things done for this city."
Arnold’s message to people? "Life is to be lived to its fullest. We have a lot of responsibilities regardless of who we are in life and you can either live it to its fullest and be happy with your situation, or you can be miserable," said Arnold.
Not only is she Marked Tree's first woman mayor, she's believed to be the oldest mayor currently serving in the state. "I don't know. I'm scared to find out ‘cause I don't want a big issue made of it," said Arnold.
She says she loves her job but says won't be running for re-election. When her term is up, she says it will be time to retire.
"I'm pretty mature. I'm having trouble with my legs. It's frustrating when you mature and I don't say that other word," said Arnold.