During his run for office in 2019, Reid told C&G Newspapers, “I love the city. I keep an open mind and just kind of think everything through, and use my heart and use my brain to come up with a good solution.” Reid, 71, died July 12.

During his run for office in 2019, Reid told C&G Newspapers, “I love the city. I keep an open mind and just kind of think everything through, and use my heart and use my brain to come up with a good solution.” Reid, 71, died July 12.

File photo by Brian Louwers


Center Line City Councilman, Mayor Pro Tem James Reid remembered

‘He was always everywhere in the city’

By: Brian Louwers | Warren Weekly | Published July 13, 2021

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“Jim was truly a champion of the city of Center Line and was just a kind-hearted, happy-go-lucky soul. He never said anything negative about anybody. He’s definitely going to be missed.”

Dennis Champine, Center Line City Manager

CENTER LINE — If something was happening in Center Line, James Reid was there.

A retired member of the UAW, he followed city politics for a decade before he was named to a seat at the City Council table in 2015, when Bob Binson was appointed mayor following the death of David Hanselman. Reid ran for the seat in 2019 and won election to his first full term as a city councilman. He was also named the city’s mayor pro tem.  

Reid, 71, died early on July 12 at Ascension St. John Macomb-Oakland Hospital in Warren.

“They called me Sunday and said that he wasn’t going to make it,” Binson said on July 13. “Last night, we had our first council meeting since he passed. It was kind of tough during roll call and excusing him.

“He was a great man. He did a lot,” Binson said. “He was always everywhere in the city. He made sure he was checking on everybody. He was at every event.”

 A resident of the city for at least 27 years, Reid held the title of grand knight at the Father Kramer Knights of Columbus Council 2835 on Bernice Street, west of Van Dyke Avenue in Center Line.

“He has been grand knight, actually, 10 years, which is kind of unprecedented in and of itself,” said Robert Chubb, the group’s financial secretary. “Jim was a very giving person. He would do all kinds of things. At Christmas, he would dress up as Santa to distribute gifts. He was a mentor to many. 

“He was the kind of person that everybody liked. He enjoyed being with people. He enjoyed the Knights of Columbus. He was very proud of being a city councilman, and they were proud of him, too,” Chubb said.  

City Manager Dennis Champine said city officials and employees gathered at the Knights of Columbus hall to remember Reid as news of his passing spread on July 12. 

“Jim was truly a champion of the city of Center Line and was just a kind-hearted, happy-go-lucky soul,” Champine said. “He never said anything negative about anybody. He’s definitely going to be missed.”

Prior to his entrance into local politics, Reid worked for Ford Motor Co. for more than 33 years. 

During his run for office in 2019, Reid told C&G Newspapers, “I love the city. I keep an open mind and just kind of think everything through, and use my heart and use my brain to come up with a good solution. 

“You’re not going to please everybody. You know how that works. You’re going to do what you think is right,” he said at the time.

Champine said Center Line’s remaining City Council members would by law have 30 days from the time of Reid’s death to approve an appointed successor. He said they could vote to extend that deadline, but they would have to do so at a public meeting. 

Center Line’s next City Council meeting will be held on Aug. 2. If necessary, Champine said the vote on an appointment could come at a special meeting scheduled after that date. 

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