The old man who died in the Mt St Helens eruption was once sunk by a U-boat, smuggled booze, threw his ex-wife into a lake during arguments, got park rangers drunk, impersonated game wardens, assaulted taxmen, hated hippies, chased off a Supreme Court Justice and died with his cats on a volcano

Harry R. Truman

Harry R. Truman (October 1896 – May 18, 1980) was an American businessman, bootlegger, and prospector. He lived near Mount St. Helens, an active volcano in Washington state, and was the owner and caretaker of Mount St. Helens Lodge at Spirit Lake near the foot of the mountain. Truman came to fame as a folk hero in the months leading up to the volcano’s 1980 eruption after refusing to leave his home despite evacuation orders. He is presumed to have been killed by a pyroclastic flow that overtook his lodge and buried the site under 150 ft (46 m) of volcanic debris.

After Truman’s presumed death, his family and friends reflected on his love for the mountain. In 1981, Art Carney portrayed Truman in the docudrama film St. Helens. He was comm… Continue Reading (9 minute read)

12 thoughts on “The old man who died in the Mt St Helens eruption was once sunk by a U-boat, smuggled booze, threw his ex-wife into a lake during arguments, got park rangers drunk, impersonated game wardens, assaulted taxmen, hated hippies, chased off a Supreme Court Justice and died with his cats on a volcano”

  1. RedditVince

    This guy and the one scientist who stayed on the hill taking images and video knowing the pyroclastic flow would crisp him. Watching the flow overcome the camera was amazing… So sad I can not remember his name…

  2. fatherfrank1

    Every man dies. Not every man really lives.

  3. Veritas3333

    Some comedian does a great joke about this, about how his whole school was following the story about this American hero standing up to The Man that was trying to run him and his cats off his property. Then the mountain exploded and he died, and someone in school was like “what about all the cats?!” And everyone cried.

    My Google skills are weak, I can’t find it.

  4. dagobahh

    Yeah, I’d probably be ~~hiding~~ living on a volcano if I’d done all that.

  5. Jaycatt

    I was 10 years old when this happened, and at the time I thought it was the ex-President. I wondered why it wasn’t making more headline news.

  6. AnthillOmbudsman

    >reportedly hated Republicans

    Before anyone starts talking about that, the Republican party was identified with industrialists, bankers, and New York back in those days. The rural working class voted Democrat back then.

  7. notagoodboye

    Man, mountain men are the same on both sides of the country. Hah. Sounds like a good number of people I grew up around in the Appalachians.

  8. Skenghis-Khan

    The “threw his ex-wife into a lake during arguments” implies this happened more than once and there’s something about that which I find hilarious

  9. EmeraldPhoenix525

    Sounds like a guy you wanna invite to a party every now and then, get drunk and drop him off in the middle of nowhere.

  10. Digndagn

    That’s interesting, although “threw his wife” and “hated hippies” makes him sound kind of like an a-hole to me.

Leave a Comment