Remember When

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This year is the 50th reunion for those who were seniors when Typhoon Freda wreaked havoc across campus during the fall of 1962.

“The Columbus Day Storm,” as Freda is more commonly known, never fails to elicit memories from firsthand witnesses. Share your storm story with us at giftplan@uoregon.edu.

An alum shared this story with us…

I was a little young to remember. (Just shy of 1 year old) However, many of my family members were right in the thick of the storm.

My father was managing a variety store in Beaverton, Oregon. It had ‘Plate Glass’ windows on three elevations, including South. He had just put all customers in the back room for safety. He went back out to the windows to check for leaks. At that moment, he heard a pop. My dad hit the floor. All of the windows shattered in large sections and went flying through the store. The glass was traveling at such a high rate of speed that all merchandise on the upper shelves went with it. In the fabric department, the glass went through the fronts of the pattern cabinets and as well as through all of the densely packed patterns and out the back of the steel cabinets. The Libbey glassware was a total loss. Wall decor was also significantly damaged.

My dad then went across the street to the lumber yard (before many others did) to get plywood to cover the window openings. He worked late into the evening.

At home, my sisters were playing with their friends. When it came time for their father to come pick them up, he drove his VW Bug right up the sidewalk to the front porch to pick up his daughters.

When my father finally made it home, we were all in bed. When he went to bed, he heard roof shingles flapping overhead. Since he cannot ‘stand’ to let anything go, he immediately went outside, put out the ladder to get to the second floor roof and began re-nailing the loose tabs. As the wind was still high, the ladder blew over. Dad then had to ‘pound’ the roof and shout to wake Mom up so she could go rescue him in the middle of the night!

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