We, as Californians, have lost our best cheerleader, tourism advocate, and truly an interesting and unintentionally funny man. Huell Howser died Sunday January 6, 2013, apparently of natural causes.
Huell is best remembered as the charming, tall, white-haired man with the drawl of a Tennessee gentleman. Always positive, engaged and curious, Huell brought out the best in all of his interviews, even the most camera shy "expert" he interviewed would immediately warm up to him and let fly with interesting local anectdotes.
If you get a chance some time this week, sit down and watch some episodes with your kids or spouse. My daughter has always loved watching Huell from the time she was a baby. It was inevitable, you would be channel surfing and then all of a sudden you would hear his mellow drawl, and then decide that you would watch for just a minute, only to be sucked in and wanting more. He was that kind of guy. I always thought I would just run into him at some obscure bit of the Golden State, alas that never came to pass.
And what ever-lasting tribute can say that you've made it in this world other than having a character modeled after you on the Simpsons, as Huell did.
Huell we love you and will miss you, thanks for bringing us California's Gold! We now will include you as a part of this great state's legacy. Rest in peace.