Cathedral City announced plans Thursday for a public ceremony for Mayor Greg Pettis, who died Tuesday at age 63.
The ceremony is slated for Feb. 1 at Big League Dreams Sports Park, and is expected to feature dignitaries from federal, state, county and local institutions, as well as members of Pettis’ family, city staff and friends.
City officials say the public is invited to share memories and pay tribute to Pettis’ legacy. The ceremony will be emceed by KESQ Meteorologist Patrick Evans and will be followed by a reception on site.
Pettis, the longest-serving member of the City Council and the city’s first openly gay public servant, was hospitalized last Wednesday following complications related to gastric bypass surgery and died Tuesday afternoon.
“It is with devastating sadness that the city of Cathedral City has learned of the passing of the honorable Mayor Gregory Pettis,” a statement released Tuesday said.
City officials said Pettis “will be remembered for his progressive legislative ideas, supporting civil rights and social justice for all people, and at the same time working hard to bring economic development to the city he loved to call home since 1979.”
Pettis joined the City Council in 1994, following 15 years in the hospitality industry. He was sworn in last month to his first mayoral term.
City officials praised his work founding the Healing Field Program that honors fallen soldiers at Patriot Park, his advocacy for the LGBT Veterans Memorial at Desert Memorial Park and his work toward developing the city’s Arts and Entertainment District, among other feats.