TALLAHASSEE: Florida Democrat Earl K. Wood and Alabama Republican Charles Beasley won their respective elections but they will not take office. Both men died weeks before the Nov. 6 election yet managed to beat their very much alive opponents by comfortable margins. Wood died on Oct. 15 from natural causes at age 96, during his campaign for a 12th term as Orange County Tax Collector in Orlando, Florida. Criticized for rarely coming into the office while collecting a $ 150,000 salary and $ 90,000 pension, Wood initially announced he would step down, only to change his mind when a longtime political foe made plans to seek the seat. Wood’s wide name recognition after almost half a century in office scared off several serious contenders.