Amended Lawsuit Over Busted Sale Of Marshall Mountain Show Missouri Couple Faced A “Local” Nick/Rick Combo Punch

by Travis Mateer

The local reporting about the busted sale of Marshall Mountain is leaving me confused.

I actually had to check my sources to make sure I didn’t hallucinate Rick Wishcamper was involved, or that some kind of Mandela effect might be screwing with me, especially considering I referenced the OTHER person now being discussed in relation to what went wrong with the sale of Marshall Mountain in this post.

Now, in an amended filing to the Missouri couple’s lawsuit, the name being reported as offering a cash backup offer is none other than Nick Checota. From the first link:

The amended complaint states that Nick Checota, a Missoula entertainment promoter, had submitted a backup offer “for a higher price than the purchase price specified in the agreement between the Doerings and Melbys.”

The recreational community, including Mountain Bike Missoula, held out hope that the Doerings would accept Checota’s backup offer, suggesting that Checota, who hadn’t been identified as the second potential buyer at the time, intended to place the property in the public domain to maintain its current public access.

So the Doerings, who no one in Missoula is supposed to feel sorry for, got the Nick/Rick combo punch. And it will be the Doerings who will be depicted as the outsiders, while the Wisconsin/Maine transplants who share having a rich Daddy named Joe will be depicted as “a Missoula entertainment promoter” and a “longtime Missoula developer”, respectively.

I know I’m not supposed to feel sorry for the Doerings, but the details of how this blew up in their face is actually pretty terrible, considering how far along they had gotten in their relocation. And I’m not just talking about putting their house on the market. No, the house is sold and the moving van was on its way:

According to the complaint, the original contract had gone so far that the Melbys’ were already heading to Missoula. Their household possessions were also heading to Missoula with a moving company.

Mr. Melby also had quit his job in St. Louis and was preparing for his new job at Providence.

“The Melbys — including their children — were caught by surprise while in the midst of a cross-country move, without the ability to go back to the life they had left in Missouri or move forward and pursue the life they were set to establish in Montana,” the complaint contends.

That’s all pretty terrible, but when two dudes with names that rhyme with DICK bring the combined power their JoeDad Derivative Swap origins, well, what’s a SHOW-ME STATE couple to do?

Litigate in court for damages, of course.

I just hope Nick is keeping that Covid relief cash in a separate account.

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Amended Lawsuit Over Busted Sale Of Marshall Mountain Show Missouri Couple Faced A “Local” Nick/Rick Combo Punch

  1. JC says:

    Somehow, I don’t feel sorry for the millionaire cardiologist who up-ended his life and got the moving van going before he closed on his piece of the Montana Dream™. I really feel that this Show Me guy has to compete on the open market for a new home, or rental and find a storage unit big and secure enough for his semi load of antiques. Then compete with hundreds of other wealthy out-of-staters for a spiraling over-priced middle class home…

    But it is indicative of the Rick/Nick team to come to the rescue. After all, they’re probably going to have to reapply for that 14 million dollar TIF bonus for the Adrift. Nothing like a little community service to pad the way.

  2. TC says:

    As recently noted in the Msla Current, Wishcamper is intending to purchase Marshall and to hold the property temporarily. Or as he put it – long enough to let the City secure the funding to purchase it. Not sure why the City would purchase so far outside the city limits but Wishcamper stated it so definitively that it seems a plan must be in place. If accurate it would be nice if our City would share this info w/its tax-paying (piggybank) residents. It would also be nice to know what level of profit Wishcamper will make for benevolently “holding” this property temporarily for the City.

    • TC: as to wht a city would purchase so far outside the city limits, see my Reply to DGF. Often it’s a long game to completely surround a large territory, making its annexation much easier. The Rattlesnake watershed including the lakes expanded city territory north of Stuart Peak. Marshall grade to the East adds a potential link in a future chain of surrounding a very large area. Totally speculative, but it is a valid hypothesis to be placed in the bag of theories. Some day the rich climate change refugees will need mountain chalets. TIF will deliver.

  3. J. Kevin Hunt says:

    Checota is desperate to maintain a reputation as benevolent oligarch. His true allegiances could not be more clear. He’s backing big landlords in the city elections. His wife is Treasurer for one of my opponents, who is a landlord for many renters on the north side. Like Dennis Washington, Checota will do what it takes to be thought of as a hero while exploiting us to the max.

  4. D.G.F. says:

    So who is Rich Wishchamper? He is the son of Joe Wishcamper of Portland,Maine who founded the Wishrock Company that operates in 17 states since the early 70’s developing and investing in “affordable” housing with about 11,000 units. Rich Wishcamper is the Chairman of the company but the main office is in Maine. Wishrock has been using mostly federal funds through many government programs leveraging tax credits such as federal housing tax credits.,and private capital with government backed debt and grants. They are a small private family controlled company with a small staff. Rich attended New England College,College of the Atlantic and came to Montana and received a degree in Business from the University of Montana and actually taught some courses there. Rich was a founding partner in Rocky Mountain Development Group who helped push the gentrification of Missoula by buying the Wilma Building in 2007 and converting the apartments into condos mostly sold to wealthy from out of state. His group sold the Wilma to Checota. Rich serves on the Mayors Council of Affordable Housing. The Wishrock Co. operates Vista Villa Apartments in Great Falls and Silvertip Apartments in Missoula among their holdings. I found it interesting the Rich said there already had been meeting with city officials regarding city buying this and he also brought up open space bonds to pay for this, which really doesn’t help housing much. Does anyone really think a real estate developer is doing this out of the goodness of his heart? Looks like the taxes payer are going to be on the hook again and off the tax roll in the end. I find this so interesting in that this property had been for sale for years and finally had a buyer and suddenly the whole thing is blown up. Appears more going on here then meets the eye.

    • Totally agree. This is like “Hooray for the Home Team and Public Access. Our local multimillionaires are better than the outer-staters.” I’ve suggested to folks that they are celebrating too early, but they get angry.

      As far as why a city would want to acquire property that far outside the city, it is usually easier for a city to annex an area by surrounding it. I plan to grab a geopolitical overlay screenshot to examine this. Acquisition of the old Mountain Water pushed city jurisdiction nort of Stuart Peak. Marshall grade to the East … there are some great aerial pix of this area. I agree that there is always a long game with these guys. I’m taking a bit of bashing for alluding to this, but it’s always been that way. I was living here 30 years before the “longtime residents” that moved here in the 90s. They’ve certainly been here long enough to be classified as genuine locals, and also long enough to know the score. The difference I see now is the dominant narrative of “collaboration” and rejection of class analysis.

      Community ownership of many kinds of assets is a good thing, but there are evils that are exacerbated when a municipality acts as a commercial investment bank without the depositors (taxpayers) having the equivalent of FDIC protections. There are a lot of ’boutique liberals’ who re-elect Engen & Co. again and again. The true left and the principled conservatives agree on the negative results of the neoliberal policies of the Engen years: gentrification, loss of urban farmland, impoverishment of Honored Citizens who can’t make their property tax payments..

      It bears repetition, so I’ll say it again: these policies have altered Missoula’s demographics such that 40+% of Missoula residents now consist of people deriving 100% of their income from collection of rents and from dividends. The tipping point, if not already surpassed, is near, at which Missoula will permanently be a haven for the very rich and anyone not in that category will be unable to live here. It is economic cleansing, and it’s the same agenda of Gianforte Republicans.

      But the Establishment media will maintain the false narrative that the battle lines are “liberals vs. conservatives.” Certainly that is accurate with regard to many issues, but when it comes to the commodification of Montana, it’s all about class. The “collaboration” candidates don’t want the underclass to develop class consciousness. Thanks for the soapbox.

  5. Djinn&tonic says:


Leave a Reply