John Dodge, A Deadly Wind: The 1962 Columbus Day Storm
Were you in Portland for the Columbus Day Storm of 1962? That storm was a freak of nature, a weather outlier with deadly winds topping one hundred miles per hour. The storm killed dozens, injured hundreds, damaged more than fifty thousand homes, and leveled enough timber to build one million homes. To find an equally ferocious storm of its kind, one must fast-forward fifty years and cross the continent to Superstorm Sandy’s 2012 attack on the East Coast. While Superstorm Sandy was predicted days in advance, the Columbus Day Storm caught ill-equipped weather forecasters by surprise. From its genesis in the Marshall Islands to its final hours on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, the storm plowed an unparalleled path of destruction.
In A Deadly Wind, published by Oregon State University Press, veteran journalist John Dodge tells a compelling story spiced with human drama, Cold War tension, and Pacific Northwest history. This is a must-read for the tens of thousands of storm survivors, for history buffs, and for anyone interested in the intersection of severe weather events and climate change. Jim Lynch, author of several novels, including The Highest Tide, says “A Deadly Wind is a wonderful book written by one of the Pacific Northwest’s best storytellers. With John Dodge’s reporting and engaging prose, the biggest storm to ever slam the west coast roars back to life on these pages.”
John Dodge was a columnist, editorial page writer, and investigative reporter for the Olympian before retiring in 2015 after an award-winning career spanning forty years. Dodge is a veteran of natural disaster reporting, including the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens, the 1989 Bay Area earthquake, the 2001 Nisqually earthquake, and numerous damaging windstorms and floods. He experienced the Columbus Day Storm as a young teenager. Dodge and his wife live in Olympia.