Clatsop County Sheriff Tom Bergin confirmed Painter’s death to the Associated Press, stating that he was found when a friend grew concerned and visited the house after being unable to reach Painter.
Bergin said a cause of death would not be released until a toxicology report had been completed, but that there was no apparent evidence of foul play.
Painter found notoriety after appearing on early seasons of the Discovery Channel series, which follows the lives of fishermen in the Alaskan waters of the Bering Sea, paying particular attention to the hazardous nature of the job. An expert crab fisherman, Painter first made appearances on “Deadliest Catch” in 2006 during season 2, but chose to leave the series several episodes into the third season. He worked as an engineer aboard the the F/V Maverick before taking over the captaincy. He later acquired his own vessel, the F/V Tradition, returning the Maverick to Capt. Rick Quashnick.
“Deadliest Catch” premiered in 2005 with 10 episodes, and aired its 13th season in 2017. The series takes place over two fishing seasons, those of the king crab, in October, and the snow crab, in January. Mike Rowe of “Dirty Jobs” narrates the United States version of the series.
(Pictured: Blake Painter, left, with Captain Rick Quashnick, right, in 2006.)