Pamela Padula

View memory board

Share a memory, offer a condolence

Share obituary

Let your community know

Listen to this story

Hear your loved one's obituary

Send flowers

Let the family know you are thinking of them

Plant a tree

Give to a forest in need in their memory

Obituaries in Mt Shasta, CA | Mount Shasta Herald

On Saturday, February 18, 2023, Pamela Sue Padula passed away unexpectedly of natural causes. She died with her loving husband, Timothy J. Padula by her side, in their long-time Dunsmuir home. Pamela was born April 28, 1960, to Patricia Woodard (McGaugh,) in Arlington, CA. She was raised by her mother and father, Patricia and Carey (Red) McGaugh, alongside her brother Gene McGaugh, who preceded her in death, and her sister Laurie Moore, who currently resides in Coos Bay, Oregon. She was brought up in a family of Police Officers, Dispatchers and Railroaders, which helped to shape her view of the world.

Pamela spent her early childhood years in Dunsmuir, before the family moved to Mount Shasta, where she attended and completed high school, on independent study, months earlier than her classmates. She was the homecoming queen during the 1977/ 1978 school year, as well as an accomplished cheerleader. She attended College of the Siskiyous. Pamela was married to Duane Sidebottom around 1981 and had her first child, Lathan Sidebottom in 1983. Around this time, she began her career as a fire lookout for the California Department of Forestry, on Duzel Rock lookout in Scott Valley. Pamela’s daughter Dayna Padula was born in 1988. She worked at Duzel Rock lookout for at least five years, hiking an arduous route to and from the tower with the kids in tow.

In 1991 Pamela married Timothy J. Padula and relocated to Dunsmuir, where she lived through her final days. As she joined the Padula family, she gained a second daughter in Brenda Padula, who she greatly loved and helped raise. Pamela worked hard to provide for Brenda, Lathan and Dayna, while demonstrating unparalleled devotion to her husband, Timothy. She cared for her mother, father and brother through their final days.

Pamela continued her career in public service working for the U.S. Forest Service on numerous fire lookouts in Siskiyou and Shasta Counties. During her career, spanning approximately 40 years, she restored lookout towers across southern Siskiyou County, while protecting the National Forests and private timberlands she so valued. Pamela spent a handful of years working at the front desks for the Mt. Shasta and McCloud Ranger District offices, edited books for an outdoor writer, and owned and operated vacation rentals in her hometown of Dunsmuir.

Pamela demonstrated a deep level of care for the wild environment in Siskiyou County, and was known for impassioned op-eds, letters to elected officials, and vocal advocacy for issues concerning natural resources in the north state. She displayed consistent activism for a variety of government accountability, civil rights, and environmental justice causes affecting all people and the environment. Pamela had a strong sense of right and wrong, which she instilled in her family and friends.

Pamela kept tropical birds and ensured the neighborhood small game population was well fed at all times of the year. Pamela was a historian at heart, taking great effort to research and document historic structures, original townsites, infrastructure, community leaders, and of course, the history and evolution of fire lookouts. She was a talented writer, with an innate ability to recall and define even the most obscure words in the English language, while achieving a working command of Spanish through higher education.

Pamela loved to travel, with a particular fondness for Mexico, the Caribbean, Hawaii, Costa Rica, and the islands of the south Pacific. She was a talented, if not reckless skier, and friends to the original founders of Mt. Shasta Ski Park. The Sacramento River watershed and its myriad swimming holes remained close to her heart and occupied much of her free time in the summer months.

Pamela worked hard at being a good citizen, loving wife and mother, caretaker of the natural world, and friend to many. She is survived by her husband Timothy J. Padula, Son Lathan Sidebottom and his wife Deanna, grandchildren Amelia and Avery Sidebottom, Pamela’s daughters Dayna Padula and Brenda Padula, grandchildren Gage, Ireland and Blayke Padula, Pamela’s sister Laurie Moore, nieces Cassie, Patty, Randi, and her nephew Billy Moore. She was preceded in death by her mother Patricia McGaugh, father Carey (Red) McGaugh, and brother Gene McGaugh.

A celebration of life will be held at the Dunsmuir City Park Botanical Gardens at 12:00 PM on Saturday, May 13, 2023, with reception to follow at the Dunsmuir City Hall. All are invited to attend.

Posted online on March 08, 2023

Published in Mount Shasta Herald