Less than three weeks before the November election, one of the leading candidates for trustee in Fruitport Township has died.

Sherry Yonkers, 69, died Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016.

Now, township clerk Carol Hulka says it is too late to remove her name from the ballot.

“Yes, it is,” she says. “The ballot is already out.”

Because Yonkers received the second highest number of votes in the primary, she could be one of the trustee candidates with the most votes in the November election.

“Township voters may not know that one of the candidates has passed away and they could still be voting for her,” says Hulka. “But I am told her votes will not count.”

Including Yonkers, there are six candidates running for four Fruitport Township trustee openings in November. If Yonkers is among the top four, the one with the next highest number of votes will move up.

Absentee voters who have already filed can go to the township hall to get a new ballot if they voted for Yonkers and want to change.

“We will spoil their first ballot and issue them another,” explains Hulka.