No. 3 Story of the Year: Family Asks for Help Finding Highland Park Man

The family of Paul Summers discovered his body.

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As the end of the year approaches, Patch recaps the biggest stories of 2012—both in terms of pageviews and impact on the Mendota Heights community. The original article posted on July 12, 2012. The followup posted on July 13, 2012.

Other Story of the Year posts:
• No. 4 Story of the Year: MH Police Chief Investigated for Ethics Violations; No Charges Filed
• No. 5 Story of the Year: MH Man Charged with Stabbing Former Friend's Grandfather
• No. 6 Story of the Year: MH Man with Alleged White Supremacist Connections Indicted on Drug Charges
• No. 7 Story of the Year: Tornado Touches Down in Mendota Heights
No. 8 Story of the Year: BC2 Artisan Bakery Rises Again in Mendota Heights
No. 9 Story of the Year: Mendota Heights Deer Hunter Finds 8-Foot Marijuana Plants in Valley Park
• No. 10 Story of the Year: Dodge Nature Center Says Goodbye to Bald Eagle


ORIGINAL STORY (July 12): A local family is asking for help finding a missing family member, Joseph (Paul) Summers. 

Summers, age 50,  likely disappeared on Sunday from his mother's Highland Park home. His absence was discovered Tuesday.

He is described as 5-foot 10-inches, 170 pounds. He suffers from severe anxiety and depression and is in poor physical health, according to the family. Paul's brother, Patrick, said Paul's severe anxiety often gives him chest and other physical pain.

"He walked away from his mom's house in Highland on Sunday leaving behind ID, phone, credit cards," said Jennifer Arriola, Summers' cousin and a staffer at Visitation School in Mendota Heights. "We are trying every way possible to find him."

Paul is a graduate of Cretin High School. His father is the original co-host of Twin Cities Public Television's "Almanac," the late Judge Joseph Summers.

If you see Summers, please call 911 or a member of his family, Patrick: 651-470-9162 or Steve: 612-716-4497


FOLLOWUP (July 13): Joseph (Paul) Summers was found dead Friday morning, according to family, after his disappearance prompted a two-day search.

Family thought Summers, age 50, left his mother's Highland Park home on Sunday without credit cards, phone or ID. He was reported missing on Tuesday.

It appears Summers, who suffered severe anxiety and depression, took his own life, and was found at his mother's home in another search of the property, according to Summers' cousin Jennifer Arriola.

"There's an end, but it's not the end we wanted," said Arriola, who is a staffer at Visitation School. "But he was in a lot of pain for a long time, so that's over for him."

Paul was a graduate of Cretin High School. His father was the original co-host of Twin Cities Public Television's "Almanac," the late Judge Joseph Summers.

Arriola said she appreciated the outpouring of community support during the search.

"You don't realize how many lives someone touched until they're gone," said Arriola.


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