The writing was on the wall for Willie Young’s political career long before he was engulfed in a polling week controversy.
After a decade representing Bridge of Don, voters gave him an unequivocal thumbs down with barely more than 800 remaining loyal.
His campaign to cling on in the townhouse was not helped by the ongoing row over public funds being used for repairs to his family’s property.
The finance convenor blamed political opponents for the case being exposed by the Press and Journal so close to polling day.
There is no doubt either that he was a victim of the slump in Labour’s wider fortunes, despite efforts to distance the local party from the leadership.
But his fate was almost certainly sealed more gradually over the last few years.
Mr Young may never have been the party’s leader in name, but few even casual observers of Granite City politics were ever in doubt of his influence.
His fingerprints were to be found on most or all of the big policies of the last few years – including many which were more than a little unpopular.
Not the least was the Marischal Square development, with which the man clutching the city’s purse strings became intimately associated in the eyes of critics.
The rowing back over Union Terrace Gardens and the internal coup which ousted Barney Crockett as leader are notable others.
And the public nature of his notoriety was fuelled by an unconventional approach for such an effective “fixer” – he enjoyed the limelight.
In the end that unwillingness to operate in the shadows may well have sealed his fate.
As he bows out in typically magnanimous style, it remains to be seen if civic life is the poorer for his absence.