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Water Under the Bridge: Astoria mayor thanks citizens after 2007 storm

From the pages of Astoria’s daily newspapers

Published on December 19, 2017 5:06PM

10 years ago this week — 2007

Mayor Willis Van Dusen staged a celebration at Astoria City Hall Monday night — recognizing the dozens of people whose efforts helped Astoria weather the devastating storm that walloped the North Coast exactly two weeks earlier.

The crowd packed the small Council Chambers.

Invited to share in celebration and address the city Council were Clatsop County Sheriff Tom Bergin and representatives from the U.S. Army National Guard, Oregon Air National Guard, U.S. Coast Guard, Tongue Point Job Corps Center, Pacific Power, amateur radio organizations, the Red Cross and radio stations KMUN and KAST.

City employees also received kudos.

“All of us have just experienced history in this community,” Van Dusen told the overflow audience, which required two extra rows of chairs to be hastily brought in. “Words are not going to be adequate to thank some of the heroes and hardworking team members who helped us get through these past unforgettable days.”

The howling storms that knocked out power along the Washington and northern Oregon coasts also brought a windfall, you might say, Grays Harbor Paper LP.

Cleanup since the storms hit at the start of the month has yielded a bumper crop of blown down trees and tree limbs to burn as “hog fuel” to produce steam for generating electricity at the mill in Hoquiam, company president Bill Quigg says.

The holiday season seems to have sneaked up on us.

That’s understandable, when considering that people’s minds have been on very serious matters following the Dec. 2-3 storms.

But it’s probably also a combination of warm evenings — it was 50 degrees in Astoria Wednesday evening — radio stations having to act as emergency broadcasters, interrupting efforts to play holiday music, and a number of people either not being able or choosing not to display Christmas lights this year.

It wasn’t that long ago that anticipation of the holidays would begin to build when Christmas products began appearing in stores.

Maybe it’s age, but now that holiday products are marketed long before even Halloween, the marketing doesn’t have the same effect.

50 years ago - 1967

The Union Oil Tanker Santa Maria was pulled free from a Columbia River sandbar Monday after a collision with a lumber laden barge Sunday night west of Longview.

Earlier, the American freighter Wellesley Victory and the Indian vessel Gotomu Jayanti collided near Tongue Point. Both were at Swan Island for repairs.

Snow began sticking on the ground in Astoria and other low-lying areas of Clatsop County at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, while in the Coast Range traffic was hampered by packed snow and ice.

State police in Astoria were advising callers to use chains but to stay home “unless they must” cross the mountains.

Major petroleum companies have all but given up a multi-million dollar exploration effort for oil off the Oregon coast, it was learned today.

State Land Board Director Dale Mallicoat said the companies have dropped all exploratory leases for state-owned off-shore tracts and have kept only eight of the 101 federally-owned submerged lands leased in 1964. Ten companies paid $35 million for oil and gas exploration rights on nearly 600,000 acres of federal land off the coasts of Oregon and Washington.

Perhaps the last freighter to load lumber in Westport for some time to come will be the vessel Yorkmar, due tonight at the Port of Astoria terminals to begin loading cargo that will be completed in Westport. The lumber is destined for east coast ports.

75 years ago — 1942

The University of Oregon faces off against the powerful and threatening Portland Boilermaker team, former all Americans and collegiate stars in the USO pavilion tonight at 8 o’clock, in the first game of a double header hoop attraction opening Astoria’s 1942-43 basketball season. Oregon will meet the Astoria All-Stars in the pavilion Saturday night.

Tonight’s game will introduce an expected capacity crowd to one of Oregon’s finest basketball courts.

There will be seating for more than 2000 persons and a top capacity of about 2500, which is greater than any other pavilion in the state excluding Eugene’s McArthur Court.

Like the battleship Oregon, the old Smiley-Lampert mill at Warrenton is playing its part in another war. In 1916 the Warrenton mill was turning out the spruce for army airplanes. Now the machinery that turned out the spruce is on its way to the fighting front in the shape of ammunition in another war.

The wreckers are busy today getting out the scrap metal, 250 tons of it, while incidentally putting the finishing touches to a community building idea of several Warrenton pioneer residents.

In the early 1900s the late Dan K. Warreen, father of George Warren, conceived the deal of organizing a saw mill company and erecting a mill in Warrenton.


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