Derek Jerome Sr., the Republican candidate running to unseat State Rep. Frank Nicastro of Bristol, was found dead late Tuesday, in what police are calling an apparent suicide. Bristol Police Department Lt. Edward Spyros said Jerome was found in his garage, where the engine of his antique Cadillac was left running. The politician had left a note indicating he was upset about financial difficulties. Nicastro, who was considered the frontrunner to retain his seat against Jerome, called Jerome “a perfect gentleman.” Under state law, it is too late for Jerome to be replaced on the ballot. He is survived by his wife, Teri, and two young sons.

—The Associated Press contributed reporting.