Paul Stuart Kemner died March 1, 2010 of heart failure at the age of 88 in Long Beach, California.
Born April 22, 1921 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Paul moved to Long Beach in 1923 and attended Lowell Elementary, Jefferson Junior High, Wilson High and Long Beach City College. An avid surfer as a boy, Paul was a member of a CIF championship swimming team coached by Pete Archer while at Wilson.
Paul graduated from UC Berkeley in 1943, and then served as a lieutenant junior grade in the Naval Reserve until 1946, after which he went into partnership with his father, forming Kemner & Son Painting Contractors.
In 1948 he married Barbara Jean Short of Wilmington and had two children. In 1959 they moved to Signal Hill. Soon after, he was appointed to the Signal Hill Planning Commission, and in 1962 was elected to the Signal Hill City Council where he served until 1968. He presided as mayor from 1962 to 1963.
Paul and Barbara divorced in 1968, the same year Paul lost a bid for re-election. He never remarried.
Paul eventually moved back to Belmont Shore, his boyhood neighborhood, and bought a wooden sailboat that he called his “mistress.” He lived out his years on Bayshore Avenue, admiring the view.
Paul is survived by his son Randy, a local wine merchant, his daughter Kristine Cranton, an Avalon store owner and former teacher with Long Beach public schools, and a granddaughter, Kat.