The lead negotiator for the U-A-W local that represents employees at John Deere’s plant in Ankeny died of Covid the day after the strike at Deere and Company ended.

Curtis Templeman’s death from Covid was announced late Thursday on the Facebook page for UAW Local 450. According to a Facebook post on Thursday morning, Templeman had what he thought was the sniffles, but found out he had Covid. The Des Moines Register reports Templeman was hospitalized at the beginning of November and Templeman told a Register reporter he planned to participate in last week’s contract talks by phone from the hospital.

The union praised Templeman’s “selfless service” during negotiations and said he held on long enough to see the contract with Deere had been ratified.