To learn more about Huell Howser and to watch videos picked by some of his fans, click here.
Howser, who hosted several public television programs including California Gold, was 67. He died Sunday night of natural causes, said Ayan Allen, communication manager for KCET, which produces California Gold.
Howser is known for touring California with his handheld microphone and profiling the state's communities and attractions for programs like "California's Gold" and "Road Trip with Huell Howser" on KQED 9 and other public television stations. He retired late last year. From the website for Howser's production company:
Huell had a simple idea: if he traveled the state with an open heart and an open mind, a microphone and a camera, he would uncover a treasure of California stories.
"We operate on the premise that TV isn’t brain surgery. People’s stories are what it’s all about," says Howser. "If you have a good story, it doesn’t have to be overproduced. I want our stories to reveal the wonders of the human spirit and the richness of life in California, including its history, people, culture and natural wonders."
A native of Tennessee, Howser worked in Nashville and New York City before coming to Los Angeles in 1981. He began working at KCET in 1987.
TV and movie personality Andy Richter is among those who've Tweeted about Howser's death; Matt Groening, creator of "The Simpsons," praised him when he retired last year. Fans also are sharing their condolences on KCET's Facebook page.