By Maddy Vitale
Ocean City resident Nancy Hughes, the wife of former Ambassador to Panama and Congressman William J. Hughes, died Thursday night at home at 82.
Mayor Jay Gillian said in his weekly message posted on the city’s website, “I’m sad to report on the passing of Nancy Hughes at her Ocean City home last night. She and her husband, Bill, have been good friends and mentors to me. When I ran for mayor on a platform of “Unity in the Community,” Ambassador and Mrs. Hughes were among my greatest influences. That’s not only how he governed as a former congressman but how they both lived their lives. They taught me that I could be the best mayor by working with everybody.”
In her public and private life, Nancy Hughes was a supporter of many causes in Ocean City, and she always did so with grace and class, Gillian said.
“She has been a prominent part of our community for more than 55 years and a dedicated mother, church member and citizen,” Gillian noted. “Michele and I would like to extend our prayers and condolences to the entire Hughes family and to all who knew her,” the mayor said.
The Bill & Nancy Hughes Performing Arts Center at Ocean City High School bears her name because of her dedication to the community and the school district.
Ocean City Board of Education President Joseph Clark recalled Nancy Hughes as a “well-rounded person who had a lot of things to juggle throughout her life.”
“She was a very, very outgoing person. I remember her as a charismatic person. She was also a doer who got things done,” Clark said.
Clark noted that Nancy Hughes was supportive of her husband’s political career as a former congressman and ambassador.
“She was right at his side the whole time,” Clark said.
Stockton President Harvey Kesselman said in a statement that she was an extraordinary individual who gave so much to so many.
“She was an unwavering advocate of Stockton, and was present at so many of our historic events. We will miss her immensely,” Kesselman said.
Check back for more details. This story is developing.