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Remembering Paul Kelly and Atascadero Joe

This weekend marks the one year anniversary of the passing of two members of the KVEC family; news director Paul Kelly and long-time conservative caller Atascadero Joe.

We’ve never tried to sugarcoat Paul’s death. He had too much to drink and got behind the wheel of of his car and plowed into a semi truck on Highway 1. Totally senseless and tragic on every level. Paul had been at the radio station for less than a year, but he had such a calming and fun on-air personality that the listeners took to him instantly. He was such a great guy to work with and he loved KVEC.

But the events of last week with our news coverage under Ben Greenaway reminds me how far the new gang has come in being able to scramble and provide on-the-mark spot news coverage. Ben has really grown into the position of news director. Paul would be proud.

A show doesn’t go by when I don’t think about Atascadero Joe and how he would feel about an issue. He deep voice still rings in my ears. Joe was so conservative and so passionate, but he always remained a gentleman. He never let his political views taint his personal opinions of someone. People tuned in just to hear Joe go at it. Lung cancer took him away from us far too soon. There will never be another guy quite like him and I miss Joe beyond words, both as a friend and a caller.

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