Another Montana Treasure: CENSORED or Not

Posted on March 6, 2008


This is not a national news story but it could be. George Ostrom a Montana Radio Broadcaster, Journalist, Author, Photographer and most of all a Montana Icon has been CENSORED. George was ordered not to air a story on Monday about a former station employee indicted on mail fraud charges. After 53 years at KOFI radio in Kalispell Montana, George is gone the Daily Interlake reported today. Dave Rae KOFI station manager ordered Ostrom not to read the story on air, or else he would be fired. I guess Dave Rae didn’t really didn’t know George Ostrom. But now it would seem that the story Rae wanted censored is not only out, but a bigger than ever. George is a staple here in Northwestern Montana; he is like sugar, flour, coffee and perhaps the best description salt. For more than fifty years he had delivered the news on air and in print. He sticks to the fundamentals of journalism, facts, facts and more facts. He delivers these facts in an original voice and style and he has always let the chips fall where they lay. Free speech is a fundamental right that I am sure George would defend to the death and no one will censor him at least not without a fight. Ostrom also writes a column in the Hungry Horse News a local, weekly paper, who has had among its editors a Pulitzer Prize winner Mel Ruder. Ostrom has penned a book of Photographs and stories Glacier’s Secrets, Beyond the Roads and Above the Clouds. George a member of the Over the Hill Gang, a group of old guy’s and gal’s who hike the trails of Glacier National Park, published a book of Photographs of the parks back country seldom seen by traditional visitors. These aren’t your typical Old Guy’s.

Ostrom was elected into the Montana Broadcaster Hall of Fame, where he is sited as a Montana fixture for his decades of journalism and community work.

With today’s media and the endless commentary of the Bill O’Riley’s and the Rush Limbaugh’s, real journalism has lost; with the firing of Ostrom. Truth, facts and just plain reporting are things of a distant past, but not so with George. And the bigger question for all of us Artists, Writers, Actors and Journalists is, when the facts are uncomfortable should we just keep silent or should we seek out the truth. Well I applaud George for his continued courage to do the right thing and I’ll still read his column, even though I will miss his voice on the air.

Ostrom Terminated, by Chris Peterson Hungry Horse News