Seattle Seahawks

The story behind the massive 12th Man flag along I-90 near Issaquah

If you ever drive westbound I-90 near Issaquah, you can’t miss the massive Seattle Seahawks tribute to the 12th Man.

KIRO 7 wanted to find out who was behind the giant flag, so we climbed the hill in search of answers.

“They just stare at it. Oh my God, it’s huge,” said Mike Treuting, also known as Dr. Mike.

Dr. Mike is a mobile veterinarian in the Snoqualmie Valley and he services small animals up and down the I-90 corridor.

He tells KIRO 7 that he first came to Seattle from New Orleans 25 years ago.

“So, I’m from New Orleans. All we have is the Saints, but I’m a football fan,” Dr. Mike said.

Dr. Mike was such a big Saints fan, that he put a massive fleur-de-lis on the roof of his Issaquah home.

His friends suggested that since he lived in Seattle maybe he should consider something else.

In 2013, the season the Seattle Seahawks won the Super Bowl, Dr. Mike and his friend Miguel put up the first 12th Man flag.

So Dr. Mike and Miguel painted a 30-foot by 20-foot blue tarp, tied two ladders together (which Dr. Mike recommends NOT doing) and hung his first 12th Man flag.

They weren’t even sure if the 600-square-foot flag could be seen from I-90, so they drove down there to take a look. The view was perfect.

However, that first flag was not.

“That went through all sorts of changes,” Dr. Mike recalled. “Within about three weeks the wind fluttered all the paint off.”

Dr. Mike and Miguel would discover that taking care of the giant flag over the course of an entire season was not the easiest task.

“I’ll wake up to wind howling,” Dr. Mike said. “‘Oh my God, the flag’s off,’ look out the window and see a corner flapping. The ropes will break. The corners will just rip off.”

But it’s all worth it for the self-proclaimed number-one 12th man in the Puget Sound.

“It’s been great. People talk about doing their commute to go to work and they come around the bend, they see that and smile,” Dr. Mike said.

For Dr. Mike, this is truly a labor of love, and says he will continue the tradition for future seasons to come.