I just got word that Paul McCarthy, the journalist behind MendocinoSportsPlus, passed away last night. I did notice a marked lack of memes and scanner reports throughout the day but I know the internet is spotty in the wilds of Elk along the Mendocino Coastline so thought nothing of it.
I first messaged Paul in the Summer of 2019 as I began writing about cold cases in Mendocino County. He shared my articles. He celebrated them. He coached. He did not hesitate to let me know if my approach needed some work.
I never met Paul in person. He and I messaged each other over Facebook, debated, considered journalistic ethical dilemmas, talked nonsense.
I remember the first time watching one of his live feeds as he drove along the coast and hearing his New Hampshire brogue comment on the traffic and weather.
He told me about making relationships with folks all over the county, staying on their couches after a late night of covering sports events.
Paul was a dogged scanner hawk translating the static of first responders keeping the county informed on car wrecks to litterers to shootouts.
Paul exemplified in so many ways the curiosity and yeoman nature of being a newsman. I feel lucky to have collaborated with him and know Mendocino County will sorely miss him. Thank you Paul for your service.
Editor’s Note: This piece is written with purposeful abandonment of journalistic conventions. I just wanted to write about the loss of a buddy.