KERR AM750bnr


I’ll bet you thought my background was comprised mostly as being the Voice of the Grizzlies or maybe you heard me for the first time when In My Opinion hit the airways in October or maybe you Read my Unabomber or Alberton chlorine spill Missoulian coverage.

Or maybe even just maybe you are one of those fine folks who bought one of my trio of books about the history of University of Montana football.

Or maybe…well you get the idea.

While I didn’t go to school in the Treasure State and wasn’t lucky enough to find employment here until the early eighties, you’re right in assuming I have touched a few bases since then.

And no this isn’t my swan song. Just reminiscing with some remembrances of Dave Wilson who was on Saturday inducted into the Montana Broadcasters association hall of fame.

The reason being, although several different people played a part, it really was those golden pipes of Dave that got me into the radio and more specifically the play-by-play business.

Now whether Dave just saw I had radio potential or just was pushed into a corner cuz he had no one to do high school games is anybody’s guess but he was behind it all.

But more about the legend, who possessed the greatest – maybe like say Sam Elliot – kind of pipes.

A great entertainer in his own right, he fronted several bands and always seemed to have the capacity to work all night yet still be robust, funny, and professional returning to the air just a few hours later.

When we shared the morning dais in Missoula I knew nothing about him being named the most listened to announcer in Montana in 1976.

But it wasn’t always easy going between us as we hit the air together after CBS news at 6 a.m.

We were in separate rooms and that first hour always brought its challenges as missing a cue or misspeaking just wasn’t acceptable in Dave’s highly professional world.

And when he announced one morning after I covered the Mt Sentinel fire and a Southside shooting and was named news director that we were going to news talk with a trio, instead of just a morning, news blocks, let’s just say I was chagrined .

Chagrined? It was more like terrified

just sayin;


The Big Sky

By Mick Holien

Here we are sneaking past the summer solstice, the longest day of the year and already headed into the last week of June with the weather Gods teasing us as usual with a variety of conditions.

I made it through the majority of last week wearing shorts but no worry I only went as far as the Vox driveway which is lengthy – actually a slight curve – to keep that spectacle from being seen by drivers on the dirt road out front

Read more ...

Pomp & Circumstance

By Mick Holien Here we are sneaking past the summer solstice, the longest day of the year and already headed into the last week of June with the weather Gods teasing us as usual with a variety of conditions. I made it through the majority of last week wearing shorts but no worry I only went as far as the Vox driveway which is lengthy – actually a slight curve – to keep that spectacle from being seen by drivers on the dirt road out front. We have had as couple of recent military funerals of my neighbors that caused me pause. The pomp and circumstance involved in a military funeral allow of course time for pause and reflection and as a veteran myself I am always amazed at no just the spit and polish and coordination but also how squared away they looked in their Dress uniforms. Mine doesn’t fit quite that well. And there is just something about bagpipes being added to a service, as usual excellently performed by my friends Dick Bratton and Sandy Farrell, and for those who don’t realize it, the Martine Corps Hymn is quite difficult to play on the pipes and they pulled it off. And does anything give you a chill more than the playing of Amazing Grace fading out of the service to oblivion where it is distantly heard. But the point that caused me the most reflection was a notice in the paper advertising a huge estate sale next door to me next weekend. No matter how a life was lived, in one way or another, when you’re gone your life comes down to a bunch of people rummaging through things you acquired. Makes me recall an old statement of millionaire Malcolm Forbes that maybe rings true: “The one that dies with the most toys wins.” And certainly ever respectful in the death of Bill and Ed.

Spring Flavors

By Mick Holien Seeing the Shadow glide across Polson Bay, the late-night crowd “slamming” the area’s fast food spots well after closing time, a rodeo packing area’s roads with stock trailers, and the beat of a several music choices all not by any subtle means indicators that despite varying weather cabin fever time is marching to a different beat. And even with a strong north east wind suddenly sweeping whitecaps to the shore and chasing a couple of boats quickly for the nearest cover, the patio dance floor outside Kwa Taq Nuk was packed by a majority of grey hairs rocking to the stellar far ranging voice of Kelly Sinclair and the Gladys Friday band. BREAK As is the usual this time at the end of June a pleasant early evening with even tepid temps but in a whisper blustery bursts blew lyrics from band stands and sent some folks either scurrying for cover or at least back to their vehicle for a jacket, reminding attendees why snow still tops mostly southern Mission Mountain peaks. Some three months of mostly outside entertainment is the area’s staple and while after the first of the year most music venues quiet, just as quickly the avowed need now but to follow the beat to locate the music of their choice. There are plenty of the usual recognizable groups, mixtures of several bands combining talents to form new groups and others who have just surfaced. Just circle Polson with a 50-mile loop and you’ll find your returning favorites, a new venue or two and enough foot taping, or stomping if you prefer, to make thoughts of a few friendly feet of snow dissipate. Street sales is one other signal that the extra blanket can return to the shelf and while estate sales and auctions are as per usual next weekend is the annual Amish quilt auction in Saint Ignatius, If you have never participated or stopped at the Country Store you should do so. This is not your usual auction but comes complete with the purchase of a chicken dinner for lunch in the midst of some three auction stages. The quilts are amazing and the workmanship of other items, like storage sheds, outstanding but while certainly pricey well worth it. The money raised from the annual affair is used to finance the compound’s school. There also are a couple of marinas that have opened as Big Arm, complete with a restaurant and the long ago Jim’s, about across from Town Pump now are seeing customers. How about it? Just sayin’

Devil or Angel

By Mick Holien

Having done so some 15 years ago you wouldn’t think I would have a problem when I am handed some form that asks for the status of both my employment and my companion status.

It is not that I mind the latter except for the box that since divorced or single.

Now I am not trying to interpret just what someone is trying to learn about me not knowing that my three wives have left me single or the type of person I am if, which I assume the single box is for, I have never tied the knot.

Read more ...

About Time

By Mick Holien

I’ve talked before in this corner about what I have desriobed as the vital roll sports plays in the psyche of a community and on the larger scale the country.

Maybe it is the fellowship of competition although I might favor the heydays of say the high-cleating Ty Cobb or the win at all coasts demeanor that say Pete Rose played with.

Now a days with free agency the majority of your opponents probably have been teammates at one time or another and kibitzing even during the heat of competition is common.

Why even the fifty-yard line in pre-game no longer seems sacred and I even noticed a visiting team at Washington Grizzly Stadium have a group photo taken while posing on the mid-field Grizzly after the game.

Unconscionable I say and I know a few guys who would burst through the gathering like melting butter.

Read more ...

Father's Day

By Mick Holien

Pretty serious and pertinent stuff IMO delved iknto last week with the five-part series on suicide where there not only is plenty to accomplish but an equal amount to learn about all aspects.

An already on this first of the week I have been approached by listeners either with different views, which is what this is about, or to share similar feelings and circumstances.

Read more ...

Suicide - Part 5




By Mick Holien

Lake is the seventh leading count y in suicide deaths with 109 deaths in a population of some 438,000 and the Flathead Indian Reservation has the second most suicide incidents in the state trailing only Roosevelt County where the Fort Peck Reservation is located but by almost four percent.

And since the county in which we live satisfies many of the elements contributing to suicide but few of the top tier assistance that leaves those of us who share their space to be knowledgeable and involved.

First of all the social factors:

While we like other corners of the state pride ourselves about it rural residency and social isolation are prime social factors in the proliferation of the disease.

Yes I did say disease not a wanton act of self destruction.

Read more ...

Suicide - Part 4



By Mick Holien

It is interesting to note that in the week since I started writing this series, I have had no fewer than three different families comment that either they believe someone in the family is suicidal or they already know someone who has committed this heinous act.

We have spent the better part of the week examining suicidal signs, your possible reactions along with a glimpse into my life and experience.

This has not been a clinical or professional effort but a blue collar effort of information gathering.

Now after a diagnosis and/or counseling or in-patient treatment:

If you have encountered someone in or who has completed treatment you know how some of them are real con artists and need to be aware they will tell you anything they think they want you want to hear to advance their agenda.

Statistics indicate completing treatment is a first step but be aware a suicidal person is more apt to kill themselves not necessarily in the depths of depression but during as three-month period when the depression begins to improve.

Here are a few more pointers from the Montana Suicide Prevention website ( possibly to help you decide after their release if they are harboring suicidal thoughts and just how serious they might be.

  • Take what they say with a grain of salt because they really good at telling you what they think you want to hear.
  • Though difficult and challenging be candid by asking if a plan has been formulated and exists.
  • Can such a plan actually be formulated?
  • Is there someone available who could lend assistance to help them carry out such a plan?  

So what to do and what help are available?

If there has been an attempt or someone has reached out to you:


Call 9-1-1 NOW while not leaving the person alone, then take them to an Emergency Room or await emergency assistance whichever is quicker.

Let a family member know while assessing whether alcohol or drugs are involved.

The immediate assistance of a trained professional is of utmost importance.

While again I encourage you to seek help from the aforementioned website which is loaded with information and suggestions about seemingly every stage of a possible suicidal situation.

Other resources besides include:

The American Association of Sociology (202-237-2280) or

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (888) 333-2377.

Suicide Prevention Resource Center, (877) 438-7772.

In the Treasure state there also is a crisis text line: Text MT to 741-741 is a free line for people in crisis.

And please remember the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800) 273-8255 (Talk) or

In closing we have given you an abundance of information that we hope will at least send you to the right place for help if you somehow become involved in an emergency situation or even the early stages of a person crying help for help.

From a personal standpoint I can tell you it sometimes happens very quickly and often involves an unlikely person to be in such a situation.

Nothing that we have talked about over the six segments is meant as advice, medical or otherwise, during a time when the word SUICIDE fortunately seems to be a hot-button issue.

This has been our attempt to increase awareness. I hope it did so.

Just sayin’


Thanks for listening.



Suicide - My Recollections Part 3


By Mick Holien

I have long been prompted to write or record my personal overview and recollections of suicide, its corresponding effects on me and concern at least, fear at the most that some unidentified gene may well make me more of a candidate to claim my own life.

I think it is no different that someone who is concerned about say hereditary medical issues, one of which I will include in this series and other potential maladies or even tendencies.

Coming from a tiny and equally rural Washington state Columbia River town where it seemed everyone was related and probably knew too much of everybody’s business, I knew early on there was a family suicide incidence.

Read more ...

Suicide - part 2


By Mick Holien

Not only was it surprising to learn late last week that Montana led the nation in the number of suicides per capita but equally so that recent studies have shown that added publicity dealing with suicide prevention increases the amount of deaths.

But just as concerning is that it took last week’s deaths of celebrities Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain to learn that federal data indicates suicide rates have consistently risen for years across demographic lines in most states.

Read more ...


This is the initial installment of a series

By Mick Holien

It struck me as peculiar that Kate Spade’s father told the media Thursday morning that his deceased daughter showed no sign of being suicidal the night before she apparently took her own life.

While Spade reportedly long battled depression and accompanying anxiety, her husband and business partner Andy Spade told, but she was seeing a therapist, taking appropriate medication and while admitting her difficulties seemed to have things in perspective.

Read more ...


By Mick Holien

If there is one thing that competition, meaning not just sports, often has an opportunity to teach a participant is sportsmanship.

And that I believe goes beyond offering an open hand to help a fallen competitor to their feet or that obligatory hug at competition’s end.

Read more ...

Hall of Fame

By Mick Holien

The newest and sole inductee to the Grizzly Sports Hall of Fame came to the University small in stature but after his stellar career occupied the tallest position on the career receiving charts.

Matt Wells, 5-7, 160, already is in the Hall as a member of the ’95 championship team, showed early on the kind of receiver he would be in the passing offense of Don Read catching 31 balls as a true freshman for 373 yards while converting 25 of 29 PATs on his way to sharing Frosh of the Year with Yohanse Manzanarez.

A first team All Academic with a 3.68 GPA, the Ashland, Ore., product was a 10-letter winner in high school, and corralled a remarkable 123 catches for almost 2,488 yards and 31 scores while Ashland High ran the table through14 games to claim the state title.

D Twice all-conference, Wells captained the football and basketball team while being named MV P his senior season as it could be said the Griz started their championship run with a seventh straight winning season, but this time only at 6-5.

By the end of his sophomore campaign Wells closed in on the 1000 yard career mark and stood 15th on the all- standard. He followed that with 725 yards as a junior, tenth most in a Griz season, and advanced to sixth on the career list behind Gurnsey, Shalon Baker, Bill Cockhill, Mike Travathan and Brian Salonen.

A multi-All American as a senior, Matt moved to the top of the receiving standard eclipsing the 1000-yard receiving mark and catching 61 balls for 10 scores.

Grizzly teams were 22-6 in league and 40-12 overall in Wells’ stupendous career and if you include playoff games he caught an amazing 248 balls for 3,342 yards but he also made the most of the educational opportunity by being named an Academic All American three times and was a four-time league choice.

A Divisional vice president for AIG, a financial and insurance corporation, Wells now lives near Kansas City, ironic because his first ever Griz action was catching 12 balls against K State.

He will officially be inducted into the Hall later this fall.


Ryan Rouillier Scores

By Mick Holien

Tim Ryan Roulllier’s record-setting symphonic presentation that broke an attendance revenue record in Missoula last year has drawn rave reviews as Public Broadcasting System affiliates have begun using the musical as part of its nationwide fundraising campaign.

But while several large market stations already are playing Rouillier’s artfully crafted musical to highlight its national fundraising efforts.

 Several large market Public Broadcasting System stations already are playing Rouillier’s artfully crafted “My Grandpa’s Fiddle, the soundtrack of my life” allowing their listeners the pleasure of partaking in Rouillier’s dream show.

Talented country singer Mandy Barnett will take the place of Lari White who died shortly after the Missoula show.

It has already been seen in Seattle, Los Angeles and New York but probably won’t be seen in Montana until KUFM’s annual fund raising near the end of the year.

Early estimates, according to Tim, indicate as many as 30 to 40 million people have already seen the show with some prognosticators forecasting a sizably more estimate.

An additional success story comes from former Grizzly hoopster Brian Qvale, who just completed his season with Lokomotiv of the European VTB united league.

He started his career seven years ago in Turkey and also played with Belgium and Germany before moving to Europe this season.

A two-time winner of the Eaheart defensivn award, he also mwas named to the defensive team by Colllege

Originally from Williston, N.D. Brian was a four-year letter winner who started for the Griz beginning in 2007. At career’s end Brian also was eighth in scoring and also stood eighth in rebounding.

A true gentleman who played locally in the CASA golf tournament several times.

Married to Mandy, a former Lady Griz the couple have two children.


News Hot Off the Press

By Mick Holien

Tim Ryan Roulllier’s record-setting symphonic presentation that broke an attendance revenue record in Missoula last year has drawn rave reviews as Public Broadcasting System affiliates have begun using the musical as part of its nationwide fundraising campaign.

But while several large market stations already are playing Rouillier’s artfully crafted musical to highlight its national fundraising efforts.

Read more ...

Changing Services

By Mick Holien

Maybe just maybe major companies with whom we all have decided to depend on for what we now believe are routine services should obligate the time and energy to do what most customers are so inclined to perform on about a yearly basis.

And I really don’t know how I found the time to do so when I was working a full-time gig.

Probably a decade or so I was prompted by a family crisis – that is I no longer was bringing in enough capital to pay my regular obligations – to take every conceivable expense and see if I could just eliminate it or figure a way to get the same service for less money.

Read more ...

Back on the Headsets

By Mick Holien

Sitting across from Dennis Erickson at lunch in Billings a little over a year ago, the venerable former Montana State University quarterback had me convinced that a couple years younger than I am he’d reached the point in his diverse career that he would hole up in Coeur D’Alene at least part of the year and watch his son Bryce coach football, maybe lending an eventual hand at Lake City High School.

An assistant at the University of Idaho the last three years Bryce took over for Van Troxel, a former Grizzly quarterback, who left Hellgate in 1994 to start the Coeur D’Alene program from scratch holding the reins for the past 22 seasons.

Read more ...

Is it time?

By Mick Holien

Well I guess I have taken the first step – moving methodically and carefully but taking my friend Karen’s sage advice of trying a loner to possibly replace my yellow who made the trip over the Rainbow Bridge now for close to a year.

So here at my feet while I type on the keyboard is an approximate five-year-old yellow named Boone.

The kennel has been reconstructed; a pair of doggie doors reopened and the garage doors closed leaving him free rein of the house, garage and kennel.

But with lake days just coaxing me to give it all a try.

Read more ...

It's a small world indeed

By Mick Holien

It should not surprise anyone that Jason Seaman engaged an armed attacker who opened fire at the Indiana middle school where he taught science and coached football.

While he was shot three times Seaman continued to engage the man in suburban Indianapolis last week until he was able to knock the weapon away and tackle the shooter who reportedly later told police the act was vengeance for being bullied.

Read more ...

Thoughts on Memorial

By Mick Holien

No matter what that calendar says it is again the traditional “Weekend of Change.

Finally, after an extended actually old days traditional winter, Memorial Day, dreary and rainy or not, IS HERE accompanied by a regular weekend – can I get an AMEN - is just what some Doctor ordered.

Now the prep we all do in advance of the month’s remainder we know isn’t guaranteed to light the sky with gleaning sunshine but late night temps mellow just a bit and the daytime high finds it easier to reach 60 degrees and sure isn’t about to squander time on Flathead Lake when it easily reaches to 70 degrees.

But we all know that is not the half of it.

I sure it is for you the length of time sunlight continues to brighten our days – extending chore time – and more importantly our attitude. It makes for some late campfire starts but we probably get less sleep in the summer anyway.

But please look at Memorial Day as something more than an extended spring weekend.

It made sense to honor the Nation’s Civil War dead by decorating graves and thus the May 1868 initial moniker of Decoration Day.

But after World War 1 it was determined the recognition should made of all war dead.

Read more ...

mick featbnrmtgriz

buildercreeksidead3carshow reglistenlivesports