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Mayor-elect Tyrone Crabb suffered a fatal heart attack at the catering hall that was to be the site of his inaugural party, forcing a new election.

Crabb, 59, was pronounced dead at 8 p.m. Wednesday at St. Luke's Hospital, shortly after he was taken there by ambulance, Orange County Coroner Kevin Quigley said.

Crabb, a former Republican city councilman, was elected mayor of this Hudson Valley city in November, defeating Democrat Audrey Carey, a two-term incumbent and the state's only black woman mayor. Crabb was also black.

"Tyrone was a Republican at a time when there were not many black Republicans," said Nick Valentine, a Newburgh city councilman. "Even his mother was a Democrat, so in many ways he was a man of real courage."

The Newburgh City Council is now required to select a temporary mayor who will serve until a special election. The special election must be held no later than November. No date has been set.

The mayor-elect had been under a doctor's care for a heart ailment and had hypertension and diabetes. Crabb and his wife, Mary, had two sons.

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