[UPDATED] Myrtle Avenue Closed While Bomb Squad Investigates Suspicious Object Found Near Healthsport

Hank Sims / Friday, Feb. 20 @ 11:37 a.m. / Crime

UPDATE, 12:10 p.m.: The coast is clear. Deputy Dennis Gagnon tells the Outpost that the suspect device turned out to a container for carrying fishing poles, though you can see why there was some confusion:

Did you leave your fishing poles outside of HealthSport?

Anyhoo. Great job, bomb-bot!


UPDATE, 11:42 a.m.: Part of HealthSport is being evacuated.


Myrtle Avenue has been closed near the intersection of Pennsylvania while the bomb squad investigates a suspicious object found near HealthSport.

The Outpost’s Andrew Goff is at the scene, and reports that law enforcement has deployed the bomb squad robot.

More as we get it.




Arcata Taco Truck Owner Profiled on Jefferson Public Radio

Ryan Burns / Friday, Feb. 20 @ 11:05 a.m. / Business

Google Street View image.

Jefferson Public Radio this week profiled industrious Arcata taco truck owner Esteban Gonzales, who made his way from Mexico City to Tijuana to Humboldt County, where he aimed to gain citizenship and earn enough money to bring his wife and kids here.

Gonzales’ ambition is paired with a tireless work ethic:

“One day I decided to buy my own house so I get three jobs: work in the sawmill, milking cows, and working for Eel River Brewing in Fortuna as a dishwasher,” he says in the report. “So three jobs in one day.”

Listen to the full story below.


OBITUARY: Mary Elizabeth Thurman, 1938-2015

LoCO Staff / Friday, Feb. 20 @ 8:25 a.m. / Obits

Mary Elizabeth Thurman died at her home in Eureka, Calif., on February 16, 2015 of cancer.

Mary was born on April 17, 1938 in San Francisco, Calif. to Edwin and Edla Shaw. She graduated from Balboa High School in 1956. For some time after her graduation, Mary lived and worked in San Francisco. Eventually she met the love of her life, Al Thurman. Mary and Al were destined to be together and soon made plans for a happy life with lots of children. They were wed on May 1, 1967 in Eureka, Calif., where they would soon raise the family they dreamed of.

In 1970, they were thrilled to find out they were going to be the proud parents of not one, but two babies. When the big day finally came they couldn’t believe it when the doctor told them a boy and a girl (James and Deborah). A couple of years later they were elated to find they would have another child. Heather was born healthy but it was soon found that she suffered badly from asthma. Their last daughter, Heidi was born before their plans ended in tragedy. Al passed away on October 10, 1976. Mary was left behind to raise 4 small children on her own, yet not completely alone; thankfully her mother, sister and brother-in-law were always there for them. The years went on with good times and bad.

At a time that should have been filled with joy because Deborah had just been married, tragedy struck again. Heather, who had spent much of her life battling asthma, passed away and left Mary and her family shaken.

Through the years Mary’s life was filled with the joy of grandchildren. After retiring from her career of home health care work and house cleaning Mary would spend much of her time working in her yard and in her home.

In 2013, when Mary fell and broke her hip, it was discovered that she had liver cancer. After several trips to San Francisco for treatment she was blessed with two more years to spend with her family, enjoying her grandchildren and traveling, even gaining a great-granddaughter.

Mary loved to travel and always dreamed of going “north to Alaska”. During her reprieve, she finally got that chance. In 2013, she and her eldest daughter and three of her grandchildren made that dream come true. Mary was also blessed by her son and daughter-in-law with a trip to Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks.

Her last few days came somewhat unexpectedly as she had just been given a new hip before her health began to deteriorate quickly. Her children brought her home from the nursing home, where she was recovering from surgery, when it became evident that her time to be with her savior was drawing near. The days before she passed were spent surrounded by family and friends. There would be no doubt that Mary knew she was well loved.

Mary is preceded in death by her father, Edwin George Shaw and her mother, Edla Cecilia (Sanborn) Shaw, her brothers, Edwin and William Shaw, her husband, Homer Alexander Thurman, her beloved daughter Heather Elizabeth Thurman and grandson Terrance James Cardoza.

Mary is survived by her sister, Susan P. Crossman, brother-in-law Stan Crossman and nephew Thomas L. Crossman of Willow Creek, Calif.; her son, James A. Thurman, and daughter-in-law Sharon Thurman (of Loleta, Calif.) and granddaughter Alliceà (Thurman) Crosswhite; her daughter, Deborah P. Buck and son-in-law Wiley Buck (of Ferndale) and grandchildren Matthew Buck, Sarah Buck, Joshua Buck and Joseph Buck; her daughter Heidi Miller and son-in-law Corey Miller (of Glasgow, Montana); and grandchildren Dannyell (Miller) Hover, Jimmie Miller, Amber (Miller) Stewart (of Gaithersburg, Md.), Levi Miller and Emma Miller; her cousins William Dutra and Shirley Dutra of Eureka and their children.

There will be a graveside service, Friday, February 20, 2015, at 12 o’clock p.m. at Oceanview Cemetery, in the Camilla Garden.


The above obituary was submitted by Mary Thurman’s family. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. Email news@lostcoastoutpost.com.

Shelter Cove Road Closed

Kym Kemp / Thursday, Feb. 19 @ 8:08 p.m. / News

According to Supervisor Estelle Fennel and SoHum Awareness, the Shelter Cove road is closed one half mile from the store. Fennel posted on the SoHum Awareness site

SHELTER COVE ROAD CLOSED HALF MILE FROM Shelter Cove Store. Solo vehicle traffic accident- Power lines down. CHP on scene - Estelle

Follow the CHP dispatch updates here.

Audubon Society Launches Campaign Against Proposed Oyster Farm on Humboldt Bay

Ryan Burns / Thursday, Feb. 19 @ 6 p.m. / Business , Environment

Pacific Brant Goose. Wikimedia Commons.

The Audubon Society today launched a public relations campaign against a proposal to expand oyster farming on Humboldt Bay. The group argues that the project threatens to destroy sensitive bird habitat.

Audubon California, a division of the national nonprofit, set up a page on its website urging supporters to send a form email to Richard Marks, president of the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation and Conservation District Commission.

“As someone who cares deeply about California birds and wildlife,” the email begins, “I’m writing to ask that you and your fellow commissioners reject the proposal from Coast Seafoods’ Company to expand aquaculture operations for oysters and other shellfish an additional 622 acres, almost exclusively into healthy eelgrass beds. This massive proposed project would convert an incredible 5% of the state of California’s eelgrass and 11% of Humboldt Bay’s eelgrass, to oyster farming.”

Coast Seafoods, the largest oyster farmer in Humboldt Bay and the state, has been growing and harvesting the bivalves locally for decades. According to Harbor District Executive Director Jack Crider, the company owns or leases some 4,000 acres of potential oyster farming grounds on the bay and is currently using just 300 of them. A proposal to expand the farming by another 600 acres is still in the early stages. An initial study was recently submitted for public comment, and Crider said he expected some public pressure to submit the project to a more vigorous environmental impact report (EIR).

“When I saw the first letter — and then the next hundred letters — I thought this is what they’re trying to do,” Crider said. “They sent the same letter over and over again with different names.”

Audubon suggests that an expansion of Coast Seafood’s oyster farming project would impact a wide variety of species on the bay, including migrating Pacific Brant Geese, Godwits, sandpipers, “plus tens of thousands of other wintering shorebirds.” Converting eelgrass to oyster farming, Audubon says, could also impact the bay’s run of Pacific herring, a primary food source for such birds as Brown Pelicans, Brandt’s Cormorants, grebes and more.

“Any change to existing operations must be subject to comprehensive environmental review,” Audubon says on its website.

Crider said Harbor District staff will “put their heads together” to discuss the matter. He suggested that the District’s Board of Commissioners would likely recommend doing a full EIR, though he added that the the decision is ultimately his.

“We’ve got a long way to go,” Crider said of the regulatory process.

Rash of Arson Fires in Eureka Last Night; Humboldt Bay Fire Responds to Wharfinger, Multiple Dumpsters Ablaze

Hank Sims / Thursday, Feb. 19 @ 10:39 a.m. / Crime

From Humboldt Bay Fire:

Humboldt Bay Fire responded to multiple arson fires in the early morning hours of February 18th and 19th. There were a total of six fires reported to fire officials. The most significant fire was at the City of Eureka Wharfinger Building. The fire was large enough to activate the sprinkler system which extinguished the fire. Humboldt Bay Fire was notified via the activation of the sprinkler alarm system. Damage to the facility was minimal as the sprinkler system functioned properly and prevented the fire from spreading to the structure.

The other fires that were responded to in the early morning hours of Wednesday, February 18th and Thursday, February 19th were dumpsters in the area of Broadway and McCullens Avenue and Broadway and Allard Ave. There were multiple dumpsters and shopping carts that had been intentionally set on fire. There was also a deliberate attempt to burn a commercial building; however, the fire was extinguished quickly by fire personnel. While fire crews were extinguishing the commercial structure fire, personnel located an additional dumpster on fire.

Fire officials were also notified by City of Eureka staff that remnants of two small fires had recently been found outside at the Eureka City Hall.

Dumpster and refuse fires pose a significant threat of fire extension to adjacent buildings, vehicles, or other property. Business owners can reduce this hazard by closing and locking their dumpsters after business hours, and ensuring the area surrounding their buildings remains reasonably clear of trash and other debris.

Humboldt Bay Fire is encouraging the community to be vigilant in reporting suspicious persons to law enforcement agencies. If anyone discovers attempted or extinguished fires, they should be reported to the fire department to aid in the investigation.

Accident Blocks Eastbound Lane on Hwy 36

Kym Kemp / Wednesday, Feb. 18 @ 8:19 p.m. / News

A silver four door sedan was in a solo accident on Hwy 36 about 3 miles east of Hydesville and west of Corbert Ranch Rd. The vehicle is blocking the eastbound lane. There is at least one injured person. There are emergency personnel on the scene.

Go to the CHP dispatch site for more information.