He was a very well known San Diego radio executive and also led a very important organization that helped thousands of kids in the county.
On Monday, he lost his life in a car crash in Del Mar. The San Diego County medical examiner's office issued a news release Wednesday which said that the driver who died in the crash was former longtime KFMB Radio General Manager Paul Palmer.
He was 76 years old and lived in La Jolla and died when the car he was driving crashed head-on into a minivan on Camino del Mar.
The CHP says he was northbound when his car crossed over into the southbound lanes and sideswiped another vehicle before crashing into the minivan. The two people in the minivan, a 28-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman, were seriously injured.
The CHP says alcohol or drugs were not believed to be factors but it is believed that Palmer may have suffered a medical emergency.
Paul Palmer was well known in the San Diego community as VP & General Manager for KFMB-AM & FM radio for 22 years and he then served as President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters in San Diego for 12 years.
A personal note: Paul Palmer is the reason my family came to San Diego. He hired me, a guy in his 20's from Chicago, as News Director at KFMB-AM in 1979. He was more than a boss, he was a friend, an advisor, a cheerleader and a mentor. Paul was a man with a heart filled with compassion and understanding who knew how to challenge you and motivate you to be excellent. And most of all, he cared about the people who worked for him and also cared for the people who chose to listen to all of us on the radio. He leaves behind an unmatched legacy of a man who loved what he did, loved the people with whom he worked and loved San Diego.
Paul Palmer started in radio as an on-air personality at the University of Maryland radio station where he got a rare private interview with the Beatles before their first US concert.
You can listen to that rare interview with the Beatles HERE.
Paul went on to a robust radio career as an on-air personality, account executive, and sales manager. Eventually, Paul ended up in San Diego as the VP and General Manager of KFMB AM and FM radio stations. For 22 years he lead these 2 major radio properties to a top-ranked position in both ratings and revenue.