Former KMOT News Director Nick Dreyer Reflects on 2011 Flood Coverage

If you watched KMOT’s June 22 6 p.m. special newscast, you likely saw a familiar face.

Former KMOT News Director Nick Dreyer, who at one point spent 14 straight hours behind the desk during the flood, co-anchored our show.

Joe Skurzewski took a few minutes to ask Nick what life was like broadcasting the disaster.

"Nick, how does it feel to be back behind the anchor desk?"

Nick Dreyer: "A little strange, but today I spent a lot of time remembering that time. We spent so many hours on this desk, and all the people came to help us in the newsroom. It was just a surreal, whatever was happening in the city, it was just unbelievable to see all that video coming in, and all the devastation and destruction. You knew lives were being destroyed. It was tough to watch."

"What was life here like at the news station, during the time of the coverage of the flood?"

Nick: "It was insane. It was people going out to get video, 'Hey, this just happened. This just happened.' There was so much information coming in. I was doing live reports on the phone with people from Manitoba. We kept getting horrible, horrible news. That's what I remember the most, is that the news never got any better. It just kept getting more and more negative, and so I broke down a couple times, live on air cause it was... we never got any good news for several days, so we were just hoping for something."

"How did the community band together during that time, and how did people help one another out?"

Nick:"When that evacuation order was put on them, we saw neighbors helping neighbors, we saw people from out of town coming in with trailers to get everybody out of here, cause they had a limited amount of time. My friends were calling me to say 'Is your house safe? Is there anything we can do for you?' So you remember a lot of the volunteerism, and just the spirit of Minot."

"And looking back on your time now at KMOT. You're out of the industry, but you're still very much part of the community. Do you see that period of time in a different light now, or do you understand it more, do you think?"

Nick: "It's funny, when you're at the news station, you're kind of in this bubble, and you hear these bits and pieces of stories, but when you step out of that, you can really see how this community banded together, and all the volunteers and all the work and materials that came in here, started pouring in here to rebuild from this flood. It was really amazing just to kind of step out of that bubble."