Well-known community member dies after meeting
Dr. Chester Aikens, who was known in the Jacksonville community for serving on many boards, died Thursday after suffering a heart attack following a pension reform meeting.
Aikens collapsed outside the meeting room in the atrium of City Hall.
Mayor Alvin Brown ran to his aid, and fire union President Randy Wyse performed CPR before Aiken was taken to Baptist Medical Center, where he died.
Aikens was a well-known dentist in Jacksonville.
He was at City Hall as part of the mayor's retirement reform task force.
Aikens is survived by his wife and children.
"Dr. Chester Aikens was a trailblazer and community leader who always cared deeply about helping others," Brown said in a statement. "He was also a man of strong faith. His loss is devastating for Jacksonville.
"At the time of his passing, Chester served on the Jacksonville Retirement Reform Task Force, the Jacksonville Civic Council and the Jacksonville Aviation Authority. He was a businessman who never hesitated to volunteer his time and energy to make our city a better place.
"For decades, Chester was my close friend and mentor. I will miss him greatly but take comfort in knowing he is with the Lord."
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