Boone Co. Commissioner Dead at 69

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COLUMBIA - Boone County Presiding Commissioner Ed Robb died Saturday evening at University Hospital, a spokesperson for the family confirmed.  Robb was 69.

"The Robb family is grateful for the tremendous outpouring of love, prayers and support...The family asks for continued prayers and for privacy at this time," Robb family spokeperson Yancy Williams stated in a news release.

Williams said Robb collapsed on the street after attending a son's 40th birthday party at the Boone Tavern restaurant in Columbia.  He was taken immediately to the hospital, but doctors were unable to revive him.

Williams said it is uncertain what Robb died of--but he did say Robb had had a history of heart problems.

He added Robb recently had a pacemaker installed "but had been doing well since."

Missouri Sen. Kurt Schaefer had originally announced Robb's passing on KFRU's "Sunday Morning Roundtable."

He has served Boone Co. as Presiding Commissioner since his election in November 2010.  He was sworn into the post in January.

Robb, a Republican, was a former Professor of Economics at the University and served as a member of Missouri House of Representatives for the 24th District from 2005 - 2009.  

Friends of Robb's remember him as being very caring and compassionate about his work with the city of Columbia and Boone County.

"[Robb was] very intelligent and very dedicated to the constituents he served," said Sen. Schaefer.

Another close friend, manager of Boone Tavern, James Gray, remembers Robb as being a very comical man.

"If you knew Ed, Ed was a funny guy, a well liked guy.   He was just one of those guys that tried to be there for everybody," said Gray.

He is survived by his wife, Rosa, and their five children.  

Williams said Gov. Jay Nixon will need to appoint a new Commissioner to fill the vacancy left by Robb's passing.