1/28/69 - 4/20/99


This is another page I never wanted to write.


Paul was found dead 
by his wife, Audra, at 1 a.m. on April 21.

The coroner estimates he actually died at 11:30 p.m. 4/20,
but he was not pronounced dead until he got to the ER on 4/21.
The coroner has ruled it a suicide, despite input from all of us about his mood,
his activities the day of his death, and his plans for the immediate future.

We'll never know for sure, of course, but since he was found sitting in a chair
with a thin cord around his neck, we assume that he had been, as he told
his friend Dave that he planned to do, practicing a bit on the "stupidity of suicide" for his upcoming show, scheduled for May 21.

Paul's death was the biggest news of the day. Headline news above the fold
(he'd have loved that). On day 2 there was a wonderful column by
Davis Enterprise columnist Bob Dunning. On day 3, the paper told
of the questionable aspects of his death, indicating perhaps it was not suicide.
And his memorial service, a week later, got another headline, above-the-fold coverage.
There were feature articles in Sacramento News and Review, and Alive and Kicking. The Sacramento Bee gave him a celebrity obituary, with a big photo.

The Davis City Council, Yolo County Board of Supervisors
and California State Assembly adjourned their meetings in his memory.
Flags flew at half mast at the high school, which also had a moment of silence in his memory.
and at UCD's Whole Earth Festival, one of the bands gave him a nice tribute
and a music festival in Sacramento at which he was scheduled to appear played half an hour of Lawsuit music in his memory.

It was standing room only at his memorial, and they stood 10-deep in the main room, while others watched on closed circuit TVs in other rooms.

He was cremated and buried next to his brother, David, who died 3 years before, and whose death he never was able to put to rest.

In October of 1999, the City of Davis built a new plaza downtown and dedicated a performing area in Paul's memory.

Paul is survived by his wife of 8 months, Audra,
their pets:
Happy ... Scab ... Trouble...
his sister Jeri and brothers Ned and Tom
his parents, Walt and Bev
his grandmothers Alice and Mildred
his uncle Norm and aunt Alice and countless friends, acquaintances, admirers, and fans.

One can only hope that he has finally had a chance to hug David again
and we'd like to think he's comparing performing stories with
the Chairman of the Board. We love you so much, Paul...


a few pages about Paul's career

home - bio info - kids - diary - travel - "Martha Stewart" - oitsu
revised 2/20/00
Bev Sykes