Readers Share Their Favorite Huell Howser Memories

Sadness and shock are some of the words readers used to describe the loss of the "California's Gold" host. Patch compiled reaction, images and video shared around the Web.

Informative, funny and iconic are some the words people are using to describe television host Huell Howser, who passed away Monday morning.

Patch asked Los Angeles-area readers on Facebook to share their favorite public landmark profiled on his public television shows and their memories of him. Below are some their responses. 

Have your own Huell Howser memories and thoughts to share? Post them in the comment section.

Culver City

William Eichenberger - He went up into the Vets Park tower and talked about how it was built so fans could watch them film movies at MGM.

Mary McGrath - This is so sad....I loved his folksy charm. I was suspicious when I heard about his "retirement" and now I know why ...

Sherman Oaks

Craig Au - in a town of few "local" celebrities, Huell Howser was one of L.A.'s best...his show, California Gold, was fun, funny, interesting, campy, factful and always entertaining...even if the subject was a tad dry, Huell, with his "golly gee" attitude and his"gun show" wrapped in a Polo shirt arms, always made it worth watching...and even when he interviewed the oddest people, he NEVER made fun of them...my own personal moment with Huell, standing at a mini-mall on La Brea and Franklin during the L.A. riots, chasing away looters while having a conversation for nearly an hour about how it tore him up to see "his" town this way...R.I.P. Mr. Howser.


Nan Kemker - For almost two decades my family watched the documentaries of Mr. Huell Howser. He rated right up there with Disney. Our whole family watched him. The California missions were always my favorite. But all his shows were good. I NEVER saw a bad show...never. We will miss his travels and his unique way of talking so calm and relaxed. He came to one of the retirement homes in Azusa, CA one year and we got to see him in person. He's the only STAR I have seen that looked and acted exactly the same on TV and in person. Just an amazing man!!

Julie Harris - To be more specific... Huell Howser was the creator and host of a very iconic documentary show called " CALIFORNIA GOLD"! He traveled all of California to seek out our treasures that made California RICH in history! GOD BLESS YOU SIR! He loved our California and brought so much information to the public about California that otherwise we may never have known! He highlighted and brought recognition to founders, to rebels, to historians, creators, discoveries, landmarks, trend setters, people who paved the way for pioneers who built California! He had a great idea for a great way to bring the History Great and Small to all if us Californians. PBS was the station that you would have seen "CALIFORNIA GOLD" with HUELL HOWSER! A truly great man! I personally love and remember him meeting with Leo and Cleo STATERS!!! He met with other's too that had started company's in California! Taco Lita, Taco Bell! He also did a show on the professor at Riverside Community College that was in charge of agriculture and responsible for all the Orange Trees and Orange Groves in the San Bernardino County and Riverside County! I just can't remember his name. God bless him. But, he was a customer that came threw my store in Riverside every day on his way to work.

Palos Verdes

Ellen November - His visit to the orchid nurseries in Santa Barbara. His genuine enthusiasm for everything!

Scott Bergonzi - i moved to the south bay a few years ago & caught him on KCET, a fan from the first episode i saw. i've learned bunches about CA from those videologs, enjoying some spots (even picking up some egg nog with his picture on the bottle this past holiday). i find it interesting whenever i mention his name to "locals", so few know who he is....a classic in bringing enthusiasm to CA history.

Willemina Diana Alvarez - I loved Huell Howser...I remember an episode that I started watching the middle of and I knew exactly where he was...Alondra Park! I practically lived there in the 50's and 60's (when I wasn't at the beach) I'm a native Californian and learned alot about our state from watching Huell~I miss miss him :(

Charles R. Eldred Jr. - I'm a transplant. His reports made me feel like a local. He was truly" *.*

West Hollywood

Suzanne Lewis - So sad. An all around great guy and California icon. Rest in Peace Huell Howser. You will be missed

South Pasadena

Johns Especial Ng - "that's amaaazing"

John A. Frye - Phillipe's downtown Los Angeles, was probably the first place I discovered by watching his show. Been there many many times since.

Santa Monica

Dorsey Roe - This is so sad.

Al Loren Stone - LA Riots, a camera crew cruising down Hollywood Blvd. came upon a Huell Howser walking up and down the street carrying a baseball bat. He was just keeping the peace. Amazing.

Eddie Wolf - Lost Treasure.


Laurel Ray - I was so saddened by this news, Huell's enthusiasm was contagious, even about the smallest things. His programs were unlike any other and he will be missed.

Redondo Beach

Jeremy Hutchings - We've lost an icon today. He will be missed by all he has touched during his broadcasting career.

Jim Kitchen - how did he pass?...sad..

Montrose-La Crescenta

Dale Frey - He was a great guy and really a legend in the field of making people and everyday news be appreciated....he will not be every replaced as he was a classic and true california gold!!!!

Jenna Kane Harkins - I grew up watching California's Gold and my favorite was the episode he did on the wisteria vine in Sierra Madre in the 80's. I thought it was great to see something on TV that featured the town I grew up in and lived in for 23 years! Many funny memories of always trying to impersonate him and his voice! Sad loss for our state.

Kendor Nishio - I too grew up watching him. There was a point in time were I did not miss a single episode. To this day my favorite season is when he did the california missions. It inspired me to write my first report.

Katie Emery - I loved his In & Out show -it was the first one I showed to my son and now he always orders off the secret menu!


Alma de Hoyos - His special on the U.S.S. Midway and the U.S.S. Hornet was amazing. That was the reason my honey and I were in San Francisco.

Marina Del Rey

Marge McDowell - Wow...that's a shock. I just watched the two-part story he did 20 years on Moscow. It's hard to pick just one local story, he did so many.

Manhattan Beach

Jennifer Shepard Camacho - As a former fourth grade teacher, his California Gold videos were a great extension to our CA history lessons. They always enriched our curriculum.

Margo Thole - I was always impressed that people weren't awkward or camera shy upon having his microphone thrust in their faces. He could call any bystander to the camera and immediately they were disarmed. he brought out the best in everyone.


Debra June Dickson - My husband met him a few years ago. They talked for 10 mins. The way he was on Calif. Gold is the real man he was. We will miss him.

Laura Bryant Alexander - I know a lot of people have already mentioned this, but his enthusiasm for EVERYTHING was so infectious! I loved how he found something fascinating about each thing that he was shown as he toured the state.

Melons R Sweet - I will remember his very distinctive voice. I always loved to watch his adventures through California. I really learned a lot of California history from his shows. May he R.I.P.

Beverly Hills

David Louis Burstein - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wQ5frcmMJk Obviously, the lint lady!

Maureen Elizabeth - He interviewed my sister in law at Dodger Stadium at the first game after 9-11. That was my favorite memory of him.

North Hollywood-Toluca Lake

Joanna Massie Stein - The show on In-N-Out was my most favorite of all time.

David Park - The show where he was exploring a silver mine. The docent said to not touch the walls but it was too late. He looked back at the camera, showed his messy hand then wiped it off on the back of her windbreaker. Also, my brother and I got a kick out of him being a top of CA's tallest bridge. He asked everybody who passed by if they knew they were crossing the tallest bridge. He was so excited! R.I.P.

Cyndie Tee - The show where he was in my hometown of Colton and he was at El Rancho restaurant.

Nereida Ojedas - THE SHOW WHERE HE WAS I BELEIVE IN los angeles sports arena in a lowrider show..lol and the one with broguieres milk farm...alot of hiepisodes were fantastic!

Dalida Ohanian - My favorite was when he showcased http://www.nethercuttcollection.org/ I had no idea such a place existed in town. We went there shortly after and the place is gorgeous.

Kelly Supple - The Folsom Dam episode that just aired this weekend. I grew up in the San Fernando Valley, but move to Folsom, CA a few years ago. He brought a local landmark, near my new home, to life for me. So sorry to hear of his passing.


Staci Terrace Goldfarb - So many great shows, I watch all the time with my kids!

La Cañada-Flintridge

Ted Jordan - Huell Howser was great. He will be missed. I loved the time they showed him climbing Half Dome at Yosemite.


Kristine Wendt - he did a great piece on the Circus Trees. It was really a great profile of an inventive man and I didn't know that many of them were transplanted around the state!


Kimberly Ex-Hill - Angels flight!


Deb Norton - I loved all his episodes....what was so unique about him was his passion ans excitement about life....When he spoke about something you could see the life energy radiate around him....he was a person who was about living in the now and he will be greatly missed...

Arnold Watson January 08, 2013 at 01:54 AM
I am truly shocked at the news! Huell introduced me to the rest of the state of California that I was often unaware existed. He was a fantastic person with one of the greatest personalities I've had the pleasure to experience. He will be greatly missed and I offer my condolences to his family and loved ones.
ROBERT E. FISHBACK January 08, 2013 at 02:23 AM
I truly agree..It seems people like him pop into our lives just to let us know what excellence really is, and having made us aware, they just go away....
Jane Rosenberg January 08, 2013 at 03:05 AM
A true gentleman in every situation. Although he was a transplant to our state, Huell Howser was Real California Gold.! Our thoughts and prayers are with his family. Rest In Peace Huell! You will always be remembered! Your incredible personality will be forever missed!
Carol Downard January 08, 2013 at 03:23 AM
We were so excited to get to spend an afternoon with Huell. We participated in a fire prevention video that was to help our local residents plant our Glendora hill sides in safe way. His personality on T.V. was the same in person. He will be missed! Rainbow Garden Nursery.
Nicoline Conway January 08, 2013 at 06:47 AM
I really loved him. My mom and I used to watch his show and then we'd plan little road trips of wherever or whatever he presented on KCET. An incredibly nice person. I'm going to miss him, but here is my thank you moment. I am so thankful for all the places he had shown, because he could make the most unimportant things (in my eyes) seem so important and well worth of a visit. I found out more interesting history about California and the human spirit from that man and I never even met him, but I felt like I've known him all my life, so for that, I am ever grateful and thank you, Huell.
Todd Bianco January 08, 2013 at 03:39 PM
Huell came to our aid when I and a bunch of neighbors (call us NIMBYs, if you like) tried to stop the development of San Vicente Blvd into the monstrosity that became The Desmond. He did a show about the old railroad houses that were part of the Old Sherman district. I was interviewed along with some other people in the area and he did a history of the Pacific Electric Railroad and the community that grew up around the rail yards at San Vicente (used to be Clark St) and Santa Monica Blvd. What's left of the yards are now part of the sprawling MTA facilities behind the Sheriffs' station. Unfortunately, as expected, the City of West Hollywood decided that the historic (but run down) old bungalows that made up the several lots on San Vicente between Cynthia St and Santa Monica Blvd. could be torn down to build the condos -- despite the fact that one property owner (who owned several of the parcels) had deliberately allowed the old homes to become dilapidated to push for the development. Huell and his staff were right behind us in our desire to preserve the old cottages that were nearing 100 years old and he did a great job of telling the story of the development of Sherman, the town that eventually became the City of West Hollywood. Huell was sweet, personable and genuine and I absolutely loved him. I will miss him very much.
Keith Collier January 08, 2013 at 03:45 PM
I'm a native Tennessean living in CA now. I remember Huell back in his Nashville TV station days. One of the funniest clips to me and that I'll always remember is Dan Miller and Huell losing it on air after Huell did an update on a previous story....that being the death of a pet pig. The pig lived in a KY home and was treated like a dog or cat. A couple of years later the pig died and Huell reported the death on air. For whatever reason he and Dan Miller broke into laughter, which went into tears. They couldn't talk, they were laughing and crying so much. I got to speak with Huell on the phone after I moved to CA and he remembered it vividly. He talked to me like I was a next door neighbor. You just got the feeling that you and he'd could be best friends. I am a proud Tennessean of this guy who brought what Tennesseans mostly are and made us look pretty darn good.
ChocolateDoctor January 08, 2013 at 04:33 PM
Joan and I had the pleasure of working with Huel on the third hour of the Saturday Ken and Barcly Show on KABC for about 3 years shortly after he got to LA. What a great hour it was with Ken, Roger, Chuck, Huel and Chuck... of course we added the food. Huel will be missed by many. RIP old friend.
Mei Ling January 08, 2013 at 05:25 PM
He truly was the welcome master to California...showed us what exists in our state that we never would have known about. He did a wonderful show about Lake Shrine in the Pacific Palisades, a 10 acre spiritual oasis. Lake Shrine receives thousands of visitors from all corners of the globe....and HH opened the gates for Californians. His cameraman Cameron Tucker is my next door neighbor and he had many eye-opening adventures that he will never forget. Howser's legacy is a gift to Californians.
Michelle Gilstrap January 08, 2013 at 05:44 PM
Huell spoke to the Rotary Club downtown,LA5 when I was the Director of Membership, he was very down to earth, and we made him an honorary member. He was so open with everyone. I was shocked to hear that he had passed yesterday, a true Southern gentleman has left this world.
henk friezer January 08, 2013 at 06:41 PM
I first met Huell when he was a new field reporter for KCBS, he was extremely friendly (not cocky like most TV reporters) he was new to the LA`area and I told him some facts about people and places in the local market. He said he appreciated the tips. Later when he started his own production company our paths crossed many more times at events we were both working. Even after his popularity and fame grew he remained humble, friendly and outgoing. He always took time to talk to people and though he was busy working would make time to listen and pose for pictures for his legions of fans. I will truly miss a genuine human being and especially his famed: "Oh my God!!". He will be gone physically but will always be a part of "California's Gold". Farewell old friend.
Sandy Anderson January 09, 2013 at 12:52 AM
We loved all of his shows but especially the one about Death Valley when all the flowers just popped up! We had been there about the same time as Huell, didn't run into him unfortunately, and we were also just "amazed" at how beautiful it was. He is sooooo going to be missed. We all learned a LOT about our state from him. Kept a list of many of the places he went that we had never heard of, hoping to visit some day. Thank you Huell. See you up there some day !
Hans Laetz January 09, 2013 at 01:17 AM
Broguiere's. All three of em.
Debbie E Pocino January 09, 2013 at 01:35 AM
So sad to hear the news of Huell Howser's passing. I loved watching California Gold. He showed us all why we are so lucky to call California home. Thank you Huell for showing us so many things we never knew about this great state we live in. RIP you will be missed by so many.
T Simon January 09, 2013 at 03:19 AM
Watched Huell for years. Met him in Sierra Madre. Saddened that he left us so suddenly. One of God's special people. He will be saddly missed. Semper Fi.
Diane D January 13, 2013 at 07:44 PM
Thanks to Huell, my husband and I now venture to see the California poppies every spring. RIP, Huell.
EZDuzit January 13, 2013 at 08:04 PM
There was a great comment by a travel writer in today's L.A. Times about Huell...he said no matter where you go in California, chances are Huell was there at least 14 years before you! :)
Amnesty96 January 13, 2013 at 09:43 PM
I got to meet him one day at Dupars. Nice gentleman. But more than that, when I first moved here and he was doing those short 15 minute pieces on KCET, I came up with an idea for one. I wrote KCET with the idea and he called me personally to thank me and to tell me that he probably couldn't use my idea. He didn't have to do that! We talked for awhile and I asked him out for a coffee. He very diplomatically and politely declined, but I will never forget that conversation or his graciousness.
Daniel Friend January 14, 2013 at 10:08 PM
We were very shocked to hear that Huell had died. There isnt so much a favorite episode that I remember but, and as I told my daughter, it was that he was more a part of our lives. He was there for my children to watch as they were growing up, as much as they could. I always watched him and my kids would join in. I told my daughter that when someone like this dies a piece of me dies as well. They represented periods in our lives and they help us to remember those times. Its sad to imagine no more Huell! He will truly be missed.
Jae January 15, 2013 at 05:15 AM
I moved to Santa Monica in 1997, and someone told me if I wanted to learn about CA, watch Huell Howser. For the past 15 yrs., I never missed a show of Huell's, California Gold, Roadtrip with Huell Howser, etc. You asked the question, what would you miss about Huell Howser, simply put, Huell Howser. :((
Terri W February 18, 2013 at 12:03 AM
Got the pleasure of meeting Huell at a UC Davis fund raiser. He was very nice and so funny. We have a picture we took with him and also he signed a t-shirt we have framed. Almost all our trips are because of him. He helped us learn and love California. RIP Huell.
joebanana March 03, 2013 at 05:55 AM
Wow, Huell is so cool. So sad to hear the tragic news, he'll be greatly missed. There will never be anybody as cool as Huell. I hope KCET will keep playing reruns.
Jan Freed March 04, 2013 at 01:53 AM
One of our family treasures. My daughter, Molly, was unimpressed, however, and did a great impersonation of his "Hah, Ahm Hoowell Howser, etc." which in turn became a special memory for me. We promise ourselves to visit at least one of his special places.


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