By Mason W. Canales
Killeen Daily Herald
HARKER HEIGHTS - Harker Heights voters Saturday returned Pat Christ to the city council, electing the former two-term councilman to the Place 3 seat.
Incumbent John Reider was unopposed and will remain in the Place 1 seat he has held since 2007.
Christ garnered a total of 398 votes (64.4 percent) in the Place 3 race, compared to Lynda Nash's 162 (26.2 percent) and Doug Green's 58 (9.3 percent). Overall, a total of 626 votes were cast in the election, with Reider getting 515 votes.
"It feels good, very good," Christ said about the unofficial vote count.
Christ is a 63-year-old Army retiree. He is also a retired building contractor. He recently served two full terms on the council from 2003 to 2009 and has served on other city boards
including planning and zoning commission and the parks and recreation advisory board.
Christ is looking forward to seeing more work done in the city's parks and other city services during the next three years, he said. He said he couldn't wait to see the animal shelter finished along with the Harker Heights Community Park. Christ wants to continue improving the city after leaving the council by building onto the already "terrific" services, and providing a quality city workforce, city services and infrastructure, he said before election day. Heights is growing and it needs to ensure a balanced growth, he added.
While she came up short in the election, Nash found her loss encouraging for the future as she plans to run again.
"I think it was fantastic," she said. "It is very encouraging."
Christ's last challenger only had 46 votes, so Nash was proud to have 162 against the former councilman, she said.
"I think it shows that people want change," Nash said. "I am certain I will be on that side next year."
Nash, 43, is also retired from Army, and she is a former business owner. She is a member of the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 29 and a Veterans of Foreign Wars member. She volunteers for the Purple Heart Association. Nash is also serving as Bell County Precinct 209 chair.
Nash ran for council to perpetuate the integration of diversity and create community unification by bringing fresh ideas and positive solutions, she said prior to election day. She hoped to bring new energy and a renewed spirit but ultimately, she added.
Nash's goals were to implement an affordable housing initiative, promoting programs that encourage community involvement, become an ecofriendly city, small business development and decreasing the high rate of poverty among the city's young women, she said. She also wanted to bring in concerts, sporting events and family entertainment as revenue sources.
Green, 60, is a former California Highway Patrol officer.
Early in the campaign, Green told the Killeen Daily Herald he was no longer going to campaign, though his name remained on the ballot.
Contact Mason W. Canales at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7554.
Pat Christ - 398
Lynda Nash - 162