Where were you when the mountain blew?

I was around 9 1/2 years old and keenly aware of the possibility of a volcanic eruption as it was being broadcast on an almost nightly basis.

May 18th, 1980 was a Sunday. I remember playing outside before having to be drug to Sunday School when a neighbor kid came over and said, "Our friends from Castle Rock just called and said the mountain blew!"

Living in West Valley (Yakima) gave us a pretty good view of the Cascade mountains, so my dad jumped onto the roof of our house and - sure enough - he could see a plume of smoke in the air, and it was headed our way!