The former Northern California city mayor who quit after harshly criticizing President Donald Trump died in a plane crash near the Auburn Municipal Airport on Saturday.
Dr. Bill Kirby, a urologist and was the outgoing mayor of Auburn, was the pilot of the plane that crashed minutes after 11 a.m.
According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, the plane’s passenger suffered minor injuries and was transported to a hospital.
The Sacramento political consultant Jeff Raimundo confirmed in a Facebook post that Dr. Kirby was indeed the victim of the Auburn plane crash.
“Our family is devastated by this tragic news. Bill devoted decades of enthusiastic and loving support to his family, his patients and the Auburn community he loved so much. We will miss him immensely but take comfort in knowing he died while flying – one of the other loves of his life,” he said.
According to public records, Dr. Kirby had been a licensed pilot since 2009.
The outgoing mayor took on social media last week, criticizing the President’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and compared Trump’s supporters to KKK members.
He clarified to the Auburn Journal that the rant made on his personal page “has nothing to do with my job. I reposted it,” and he “absolutely” believes that Trump is a racist.
His posts and statements sparked an outcry and calls for his resignation.
During a City Council meeting on Monday, he announced that he will step aside from his post as mayor and shall be succeeded by Councilman Daniel Berlant.
“Like millions of healthcare workers and first responders across the country, like I did today, I go to work every day and put my life on the line against an enemy I can’t see without the proper protective gear or testing capabilities because of the criminal incompetence and disregard for science from this administration,” he said at the meeting, “This president has put us all at risk.
I believe history will judge those who speak up against his damning ideologies and those who did not.”