The Seattle sports scene has been very blessed to have some of the best in sports broadcasting excellence. From long-time Mariners announcer Dave Niehaus to Bob Rondeau, Bob Robertson, Pete Gross, Kevin Calabro in the Sonics heyday. When it comes Seattle Sports Radio scene , one constant has been in the afternoon drive Mike Gastineau, who have after 21 years will be signing off on KJR tomorrow after over 5,000 shows.
My first memory of the Gas Man is actually one afternoon back in the early 90's and he was in Auburn at a Thriftway doing a remote with legendary Husky Football Head Coach Don James. As a little kid , I had always had a vision of being involved one day in broadcasting or sports writing and my other passion was Husky football so this was perfect. I ended up getting to see a live radio show in action and meet the Dawgfather. From that day on I was a pretty much a steady listener to his program and eventually by my senior year in college I got a chance to intern at KJR in the Spring of 2001, and take on the task of dealing with Mitch Levy and the insanity that was his show.
Moreover, the long lasting legacy of Mike Gastineau has left on the Seattle Community is immeasurable with the growth of the KJR Kares A Thon which has benefited so many great wonderful charities in the Seattle area as it has absolutely exploded over the course of 17 years
For example, just recently over 60,000 dollars was raised for the Northwest Literacy Foundation , Central Area Youth Association, and the Lorenzo Romar Foundation as 60 husky fans paid this combined amount to be able to break down film with former Husky Quarterback Hugh Millen. The fact that something like that can be accomplished by a sports radio talk show host and a sports radio station is something to not be underestimated.
Also, in regard to his show people may not have always agreed with him but after living in Los Angeles, and in the Northeast, I became even more appreciative of the fact that the Gas Man brought balance to his shows you could get a mix of Nascar, a Sounders FC fix, rockers like Duff McKagan at times on his shows. At the end of the day, Mike Gastineau understood the diversity of the Seattle market and combined with his work and KJR's work on Safeco Field, Seahawks Stadium, and the Bringing back the Sonics. So, as the checkered flag waves tomorrow after 21 long years, Gas Man , thank you for everything you have done to raise the bar of the Seattle Sports Radio broadcasting excellence and for always finding a way to take the KJR platform and galvanize the listeners to do whatever it took to make a long lasting positive impact on the Seattle region.