Longtime Daily News reporter Rick Orlov, known as the dean of the press corps at Los Angeles City Hall, died Monday.
Orlov, who covered City Hall for the newspaper for nearly 30 years — through five mayoral administrations — died of complications from diabetes, according to his employer. He was 66.
The Daily News tweeted the news this afternoon, eliciting an outpouring of memorials by fellow reporters — many of whom he mentored over the years — and Los Angeles city leaders, including Mayor Eric Garcetti.
“City Hall is in mourning — we are devastated by Rick’s passing,” Garcetti said.
Orlov was “so much more than a journalist,” the mayor said. “He was a mentor to young reporters, a counselor to elected officials, and a friend to us all.”
Los Angeles fire Chief Ralph Terrazas tweeted that “the men and women of the LAFD send their deepest condolences” to Orlov’s friends, family and colleagues, calling him a gentleman, mentor, journalist.”
Councilman Paul Krekorian said on his Twitter account that he was “shocked and deeply saddened” by Orlov’s death. “He was a tireless reporter who cared about L.A. and made it a better place.”
Orlov’s fellow Los Angeles News Group colleague, managing editor Carolina Garcia, said he was “a true journalist, a great bellwether for news and for the right thing to do.”
“We will miss our good friend,” she said.
Emily Alpert Reyes, who covers City Hall for the Los Angeles Times, called Orlov a “mensch” and said he knew City Hall “inside and out.”
Born in Chicago, Orlov grew up in Indianapolis and moved to Encino with his family when he was 12 years old.
He attended Birmingham High School, where he was a competitive swimmer, and earned a journalism degree from Cal State Northridge.
He started working for the Daily News in 1978 and did a stint as an assistant city editor, but returned — at his request — to reporting on local politics in 1988.
His sister told the Daily News that memorial service plans were pending. The newspaper is planning a public memorial with details to be announced soon.
— City News Service