The New Orleans Coroner’s Office today confirmed the man who was fatally shot by a homeowner after he barged into a New Orleans residence on Sunday was longtime Fox Theatre and Boulder Theater lighting designer Joe Cahill, according to the Times-Picayune newspaper.
Cahill, 40, had been on tour with local band Leftover Salmon. John Joy, the group’s manager, sent a statement to the Daily Camera today on behalf of Leftover Salmon.
“Joe was an essential part of the Leftover Salmon team,” Joy wrote. “He was a hard worker and loved by all. We are all shocked and saddened to learn of his tragic passing. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Cahill family, his friends and the music community that Joe was such a big part of. He will be greatly missed.”
Karen Shaviv, a production manager at the Fox who knew Cahill for more than 10 years, told the Daily Camera on Wednesday that Cahill had been touring with Leftover Salmon as the band’s lighting designer and had just helped the group wrap up its tour Saturday night.
While most of the band and crew returned home, Cahill stayed in New Orleans and was planning to visit friends and take in the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.
According to the Times-Picayune, people alerted two New Orleans Police Department bicycle officers that a man — identified as Cahill — was bloody and acting irate in the street not far from the New Orleans Fair Grounds, which was hosting the first weekend of Jazz Fest at the time.
As the police were speaking with him, Cahill pushed one of the officers and began running on North Broad Street, the newspaper reported. The officers lost sight of him, and when they reached the 1500 block of North Broad, they heard a gunshot.
A homeowner told police a bloodied Cahill entered his residence and began fighting with people inside. Fearing for his life, the homeowner shot Cahill, who later died at a nearby hospital, according to the Times-Picayune.
No charges have been filed against the homeowner.
Cahill had a 16-year-old daughter, according to friends.
The Facebook page for Harpos Sports Grill on Wednesday afternoon posted the following message:
“We lost a dear friend this weekend. One of the funniest, caring, talented, hard working guys you’d ever meet. We will miss you so much, Joe Cahill. Rest in peace.”
The post went on to invite those who knew Cahill to come to George’s Food and Drink, 2028 14th St., from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday for a memorial.
Planning is under way for a larger-scale memorial for Cahill at the Fox, as well as a possible benefit event for his daughter.