Lazy Tree Shuts Down One Lane of 4th Street in Eureka

John Ross Ferrara / Saturday, Oct. 15 @ 4:17 p.m. / How ‘Bout That Weather

Slouching tree near the corner of 4th and F Streets. Photos by Andrew Goff.

Firefighters have closed the far right-hand lane of 4th Street after today’s storm caused this 25-foot tree to slouch onto a neighboring lamp post.

LoCO reporter Andrew Goff is on scene, and says that firefighters plan to stare at the tree for a while until they figure out what to do next.

“It is precariously perched on that lamp post,” Goff said.

There’s no word when the lane might be reopened.


McKinleyville Missionary Reportedly Kidnapped in Niger

Andrew Goff / Saturday, Oct. 15 @ 1:14 p.m. / News


The Daily Mail in the UK reports that an American aid worker was kidnapped Friday night after gunmen raided the house he was staying in in Abalak, Niger. Two others were killed while it is believed that the aid worker was taken to Mali. 

The kidnapped worker has been identified as Jeff Woodke, a McKinleyville native, a Humboldt State University graduate and a longtime member of Arcata First Baptist Church. For 25 years Woodke has devoted himself to Redwood Coast School of Missions, a ministry he founded that aims to spread the gospel in Muslim lands. 

From Woodke’s bio on Redwood Coast School of Missions’ website:

Jeff’s passion in providing humanitarian aid to those who are amongst the poorest in the world, coupled with his desire to see God’s kingdom advanced in a largely Muslim world has played a large part in the life and ministry of AFBC. Jeff is also affiliated with YWAM and has done extensive teaching at various mission’s and discipleship school’s on missions related topics.

Watch Woodke speak about his faith to the AFB congregation in the clip below. More details at the Daily Mail.

Heavy Rains, Strong Winds, Thunderstorms — Hell, Maybe Even a Tornado: A Nasty Storm is About to Unleash Its Fury Upon Humboldt

John Ross Ferrara / Saturday, Oct. 15 @ 11:19 a.m. / How ‘Bout That Weather

National weather service.

UPDATE, Eureka National Weather Service 1:45 p.m.:

The main band of rain is moving across the area this afternoon. This is bringing locally gusty winds to 45 mph. Strong showers just offshore will move onshore bringing widespread gusts to 50 mph with local gusts 70 mph.


A flood watch and wind advisory have been issued for Humboldt and Del Norte Counties today.

The Eureka National Weather Service reports that heavy rain, and winds of 20 to 35 mph with gusts between 45 and 55 mph are expected across the entire humboldt coastline today.

The strongest winds will be felt along the coastal headlands and exposed areas, including Humboldt Bay and Trinidad Head.

“Those dock ramps are usually angled down, not sure how much more we can handle down in King Salmon.’ -Chelsea Jensen.

One to three inches of rain is expected to hit Humboldt and Del Norte Counties in a short period of time, which may cause flooding along small streams and in urban areas. While higher elevation areas may see three to five inches of rain.

The storm will make for hazardous driving conditions along Highway 101 and 299, as water is expected to pool in low-lying areas. Be alert while driving mountain roads, as rock and mudslides may occur at any time.

Humboldt’s forecast.

Storm watchers are also advised to keep their distance from the surf, as 15 to 19 foot waves are expected throughout the weekend.

The weather service also reports a chance of severe thunderstorms and 60 mph winds throughout northern Humboldt today. Although the chances are highly unlikely, an isolated tornado is also possible for our area.

Track current wind conditions and rainfall totals throught the day with LoCO Earth.

OBITUARY: Steven Paul Sisson, 1965-2016

LoCO Staff / Saturday, Oct. 15 @ 8:28 a.m. / Obits

Steve passed away on October 8, 2016 in Fortuna, at the age of 50. He was born on October 16, 1965 in Fortuna to Jerry and Gail Sisson. Steve was raised in Fortuna and attended school at South Fortuna, Town School and Fortuna Union High School. He also attended Shasta College and received his AA from College of the Redwoods.

In 1992, Steve was set up at a Kiwanis Club event with his future wife, Theresa Mendenhall Sisson. They were married in 1994 and together have two children: Sebastian and Gillian. His children were his pride and joy. He shared his love of history, politics, the military, and hunting with his son. His daughter and he shared their love of the outdoors: hiking the trails, riding horses, working together and buying animals.

Steve worked for EPT in Fortuna, became a partner in LeRoy Gates Insurance but found his career in his business, SISCO Painting & Restoration. He painted and restored many people’s homes and businesses. He had learned these trades from his father and often worked side by side on family projects. He enjoyed working outside and the satisfaction of his detailed and professional work showed his creative side. He especially enjoyed working for the older ladies who he said were so special to him because they appreciated hard work and liked to feed him.

Steve is survived by his wife of 22 years, and his children. His mother: Gail, his sister: Debbie Tessandore, his nephew and husband: Travis Kane and Bruce Weber, his brother-in-laws: Barry Mendenhall and Garry Mendenhall. He is also survived by many family, friends,and customers— too many to name. His Honorary Pall Bearers will be: Sterling McWhorter, Robert Price, Steve Toler, Gabe Gerber, Brian McKenzie, Juan Carlos Luna, Matthew Adams.

Friends and family are invited to attend memorial services, Sunday, October 16 at 3:00 p.m. at the Fortuna Veteran’s Memorial Building.

Arrangements are under the direction of Goble’s Chapel in Fortuna.

If you would like to help the Sisson Family, the College of the Redwoods Athletic Department has set up a GoFundMe account to help the Sissons with their expenses


The obituary above was submitted by Steve Sisson’s familyThe Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here. Email

OBITUARY: Steven Donald (Roderick) Rodke, 1959-2016

LoCO Staff / Saturday, Oct. 15 @ 8:17 a.m. / Obits

Passed away on October 6, 2016 at the age of 57, due to injuries sustained while falling timber in the Willow Creek area.

Steve was born on August 6, 1959 in Eureka, California and was the son of Ginnie Lawson and Al Roderick.  He was a member of the Cowlitz Tribe from the State of Washington.  He is survived by his wife Pat Rodke; his parents, Ginnie Lawson and Al Roderick; his siblings Linda (Vern) Paine,  Tracy (D’Ann) Roderick, and Angie (Wiley) Stapp; and their children, Kelli, Bryan, and Andrew Paine; Jessica, Lindsey, and Carly Roderick; and Lane, Ryder and Hunter Steven Stapp (Steve’s namesake);  and his Aunt Verdalyn and Uncle Butch Brown.   He was also survived by his dear cousins Vernon and Artie Brown, Sandy and Buddy Brown, Teddy Ann Torres, and Darrell “Raggs” Evenson Jr. with whom he shared a special relationship.

Steve attended local schools including Eureka High School.  He was an avid wrestler and was a 3-time state champion in high school and continued wrestling at College of the Redwoods where he received recognition as an All-American Wrestler.  Steve loved his sports beyond wrestling.  He was an avid baseball fan when it came to the Giants (especially in even years!) and he loved basketball and his Golden State Warriors.

Steve loved the outdoors.  He loved it so much he made a career out of being in the woods.  As a young man he learned to be a high-climber from his dad Al.  Later on he partnered up with his buddy Walter Vance and they began a tree trimming business for some years.  He then learned to fall timber along side his brother in law, Wiley Stapp and good friend Jeff Lendahl.  Many of good times were had by this crew, both working and hunting for the trophy buck.  

Steve was a fun loving, strong willed guy that would never pass up the chance to make you laugh or crack a joke.  His nieces and nephews affectionately referred to him as ‘Uncle Stinky’!  He also wore his heart on his sleeve and would not let an opportunity go by without expressing his feelings. He once left a note for his mom that said “I respect you more than anyone in the world that, will never change mom” this is something she will forever cherish.  He loved his friends dearly Jeff Lendahl whom passed earlier this year, Wiley Stapp, Jed Vandenplas, Walt Vance, Jeff and Tuesday Petersen, Kim Vandenplas, Joel Stone and so many others that he shared his life with.  And as a friend recently said, “Oh Lord, open the Gates, A Champion is comin’ through”!A celebration of life will be held on Saturday October, 29, 2016 at Broadway Billiards 3534 Broadway, Eureka, CA from 4pm / 8 pm.


The obituary above was submitted by Steven Rodke’s familyThe Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here. Email

Time to Get Those Flu Shots! Here Are Your Options, Which Do Not Include Ouchie-Free Nasal Spray

Hank Sims / Friday, Oct. 14 @ 1:57 p.m. / Health

Photo: Wikimedia.

From the Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services:

Flu season has officially begun, and health officials say now is a good time to get vaccinated.

The Humboldt County Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS) is offering the vaccine at its Public Health Clinic, 529 I St. in Eureka. Flu shots are also available through medical providers and at some area grocery stores and pharmacies.

A flu vaccine is needed every year to maintain existing immunity because flu viruses are constantly changing. The flu vaccine is formulated annually to keep up with the flu viruses.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older be vaccinated.

This season, the popular flu mist vaccine will not be offered. Earlier this year, the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) cited concerns regarding poor effectiveness of the nasal spray against one of the flu strains that circulated during the 2013–14 and 2015–16 seasons. Since that same flu strain is anticipated during the 2016-17 season, ACIP has made the recommendation that the mist vaccine not be used.

“If you feel like you don’t need a flu shot, think about those around you who may be more vulnerable,” said Susan Buckley, Public Health director for DHHS. “Children, grandchildren, friends and family who are pregnant or may be immune compromised can be more susceptible to the illness. The shot will help you stay healthy as well as protecting those around you.”  

It takes up to two weeks after receiving the flu vaccine to achieve the best protection. Nationally, flu season lasts from October through May, and public health officials recommend getting the vaccine earlier in the season.

Common symptoms include a fever or feeling feverish, a cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headache and fatigue. Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, although this is more common in children than adults.

There is more you can do to prevent the spread of the flu in addition to getting a flu shot. Health officials recommend practicing the “3 Cs”:

  • CLEAN your hands,
  • COVER your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough, and
  • CONTAIN your germs by staying home if you’re sick.

The cost of the flu vaccine at the clinic is $17, although no one will be turned away for inability to pay. Medicare is accepted. Flu vaccine is offered by appointment only.

To make an appointment for a flu vaccine, call your health care provider or the Public Health Clinic at 707-268-2108.

Free Pre-Filled Sandbags Available for Arcata Residents

John Ross Ferrara / Friday, Oct. 14 @ 1:09 p.m. / How ‘Bout That Weather

Where you can get sand bags. City of Arcata.

Hey, Arcata. Here’s your chance to get some free sandbags. 

The city is currently handing out a limited supply of pre filled sand bags at the corporation yard at 600 South G Street.

If you don’t make it in time, there will still be empty bags and piles of sand available, but you’ll have to do the work yourself. So hop to it.

Arcata’s forecast. National Weather Service.