Thirty years ago

Today is the 30th anniversary of the eruption of Mt. St. Helens. The newspapers and TV stations in my area are running feature stories to remember the eruption and to update us on the regrowth of the region around the mountain.

Although I lived in Washington State at the time, I missed the big event because Carl and I were in Hawaii, celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. Volcanoes erupt there all the time, so few people got excited over the news.

Anne and Bob were in college, at two different schools, and both were in the path of the ash. We worried about them, and about our pets who were being cared for by a neighbor. We had no cell phones then, so communication was difficult. Bob was able to drive home; Anne was evacuated on a Red Cross train. The ash missed our home, so the dogs were able to go outside as usual, but for a few days we had great fear of the unknown.

Many years later, I vicariously lived through all the excitement – and remembered my fear – when I researched and wrote The Volcano Disaster.

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