Re: Broadcasters Cope With Columbus Day Storm


I was 11 years old in 1962. I lived near Puyallup, Wa in a town called Sumner. The wind storm wasnt as bad up there, of course. But it was violent in spots, certainly out on the coast in Aberdeen Wa ! And the space needle recorded gusts to 90 mph at the top according to KING TV . That didnt compare to gusts in the West Hills of Portland reported near 140 mph !!!! They evacuated the space needle…including the KIRO studios ( think it was KIRO up there then ) because people were getting ‘ seasick’from the swaying…and there were some safety concerns too.

That Friday afternoon my Mother said that she felt ‘too muggy’ and that the sky was funny looking, I got this from her right after school let out at 3 pm…Then I was out doing my paper route as usual and it was hot out for October and I had to take off my coat, it felt like summertime !! Overcast and muggy..I got home about 5 or a little after and my Grandfather had called from Tacoma to my Dad at the bank and told him this storm was coming up from Oregon and the KING-TV had just reported that KGW-TV lost their transmitter tower…!! And he was going on an on about how low the barometric pressure was getting to be…He was raised in Iowa in the late 19th century and around tornados and the like and he was concerned about the low barometric pressures…

MY dad also managed the town theater in Summner on the weekends and Wed Nites. He called the owners to decide whether or not to cancel the show for that Friday nite or not. The owners told him to ‘ go on with the show ‘…LULZ !! So he did and WE DID , as I and my bros. got in for free being the kids of the manager…( nepotism goes a long way )…The show stared at 7 and we watched TV of the storm before the show..then we walked to the theater, sat down and within a half hour the lights went out , and came back on and went out again…that was a long feature !!! They canceled the second show altogether…Walking home , lots of branches off the trees, a few trees down around town…but all in all certainly not as bad as N.W Oregon…

In Tacoma , on the hilltop , Wrights park lost a whole bunch of old growth trees…it took the city a long time to clean all that up !! The wind up there was a lot stronger than in the Puyallup valley.