WAHPETON, N.D. — Wahpeton Mayor Meryl Hansey has resigned in the midst of his battle with cancer.

The 81-year-old Hansey had been absent from his public duties due to his illness since June. The Daily News reports that the City Council accepted his resignation on Tuesday.

City residents have 15 days to file a petition calling for a special election. If no one files, the council may appoint one of its own members to fill out Hansey’s term, which expires next June.

Council President Steve Dale has been handling the mayoral duties.

Information from: Wahpeton Daily News, http://www.wahpetondailynews.com