James Grohl, father of musician Dave Grohl, died early Wednesday.
Joseph O'Grady, who spearheaded the David Grohl Alley project in downtown Warren, said he received a text from Grohl's brother, Tom, that Grohl died about 5 a.m. He had been sick, and his son was seen in the area in June, reportedly to visit his ailing father.
"He embraced Warren and appreciated everything so much," O'Grady said. "The whole family was so kind and wonderful, not only to me, but the whole community."
James Grohl, who lived in Howland, was a frequent visitor to events in the alley dedicated in 2009 to his son, who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame earlier this year as a member of Nirvana and now leads the multi-Grammy Award-winning band Foo Fighters.
"He was always a gentleman and a big supporter of the project," said Pat Galgozy, director of Trumbull Art Gallery, which is responsible for much of the art in the alley.
The Grohls lived in Warren when Dave Grohl was born in 1969, but the family moved a short time later, first to Columbus and later Virginia. James Grohl worked as a newspaper reporter and later served as a speechwriter / press secretary to Ohio Republican Sen. Robert Taft Jr. in the 1970s.
Warren artist Aaron Chine said Grohl told him he used to cover the Trumbull County courts when he was a reporter.
Chine painted a picture of Dave Grohl towering over the Trumbull County Courthouse at a music and art fundraiser in the alley in 2012, and James Grohl told him the painting included "his two favorite things."
After Chine gave him the painting, he received a thank you note from Grohl: "Your marvelous painting of son David and the courthouse was delivered today. What a wonderful piece. I am only afraid that once he sees it, David will want to take it home to California."
"Within minutes of reading it, I went to get it framed," Chine said. "I'll keep it for the rest of my life. It just goes to show what kind of guy he was."
Grohl was a proud father and occasionally called to talk about his son's accomplishments when Dave's name appeared in the Tribune Chronicle.
After the Foo Fighters' last album, "Wasting Light," was nominated for six Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year, James Grohl said, ''Not to be the doting father, but I thought that was spectacular. I just knew it was within him to do that. He's a very talented young man, and I've known that for many years. I'm just so proud.''
No details about funeral arrangements were available Wednesday.