YORKTOWN, Va. (AP) — Virginia authorities say a former Republican state delegate who resigned his House seat for health reasons eight years ago has been found dead in an apparent suicide.

York-Poquoson Sheriff J.D. "Danny" Diggs says utility workers found 69-year-old Tom Gear slumped behind the wheel of his car Wednesday morning on a road near the mouth of the York River.

Gear represented the Hampton area in the House from 2002 until 2010, after three years as a Hampton city council member.

Gear, who suffered from multiple sclerosis, resigned shortly before the start of the 2011 legislative session, saying traveling between his home and the state capitol in Richmond was taking a toll on him.

The Daily Press reports that Gear's wife, Janet, died in 2014. They had two adult children.