SOUTH ELGIN, Ill. (STMW) — Longtime South Elgin Village President Jim Hansen died Friday night, succumbing to lung cancer, according to village officials. He was 53.

“It is with deep sadness that the village of South Elgin announces the death of village President Jim Hansen,” South Elgin Administrator Larry Jones said Saturday in a statement. He “passed away last night after a courageous battle with lung cancer.”

Hansen had served as a South Elgin official for over 20 years, starting with his election as a village trustee in 1991, the release said. Ten years later he was elected village president in 2001.

“President Hansen truly cared about the community and the residents,” Jones wrote. “ He was approachable and open to input from citizens.”

He is credited with instituting “Coffee with the Mayor” — tantamount to holding office hours, where everyday folks who may not feel comfortable speaking at a village board meeting could ask him questions or make suggestions.

Hansen, who lived the majority of his life in South Elgin, is survived by his wife Teri, three sons, four grandchildren, his mother and his brother, according to the release.

A service will be held Thursday at Laird Funeral Home in Elgin at 11 a.m.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2013. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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