By Rick Ritter

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Heartache and disbelief lingered throughout the Baltimore area Thursday after County Executive Kevin Kamenetz died from cardiac arrest.

In Towson, businesses downtown — an area Kamenetz worked to revitalize — were left stunned.

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“He was doing a lot for the area as well. I’ve been following him on social media, he keeps up with social media a lot, and try to engage with the public and really help out the people,” Will Parks of La Cakerie said.

Emotions were also felt in Parkville.

“I just thought of the grief the family’s going through,” Parkville resident Leah Wells said.

Residents remembered a politician who often showed compassion.

“Human nature and heart, thinking about the people he represented,” Well said.

At the Costas Inn, there were heavy hearts at the spot that Kamenetz frequented with his family.

“I was listening in the other room, the TV, and I heard Kevin Kamenetz,” one woman said. reporter:

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In Dundalk, Kamenetz’s passing was stomach turning for many.

“It was like, ‘Holy crap, the county executive has passed away,” one man said.

Some reflected on how hard he worked for public schools.

“He put the air conditioning in the schools, expanded on the schools,” the man said.

Residents sent love and prayers to a family who has the entire county by their side.

“The state, I think, is going to come together and the county will come together too to grieve for them,” he said.

Kamenetz gave more money to public schools than any other county executive before him.

Kamenetz is survived by his wife and two teenage boys.

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Rick Ritter