VANCOUVER – An undeveloped roll of film from 33 years ago with never-before-seen photos of Mount Saint Helens days before it erupted just resurfaced at The Columbian newspaper.
The pictures are part of Northwest history and were taken before Columbian photographer Reid Blackburn died in the May 1980 eruption.
Blackburn went up in an airplane to capture the images of the smoldering cauldron. A week later, Blackburn was killed in his vehicle while covering the eruption.
The roll of film got lost in the newspaper’s archives before it was ever developed.
This month, 33 years after the blast, photo archivist Linda Lutes found the roll and thrilled the newspaper’s staff with the pictures.
“Anytime any portion of a legacy of Reid can come forward, it excites me and it elates me,” said Blackburn’s widow Fay who still works at the Columbian.
Read the whole story and see the rediscovered photos at the Columbian.
KGW reporter Katherine Cook contributed to this report.