Gary Shore transfers to "home where no storm clouds rise"

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Gary Shore, longtime meteorologist at KJRH in Tulsa, died today of a heart attack in Sioux City, Iowa. He was 55.

Shore changed the TV weather business in Tulsa forever. While he wasn't the first professional meteorologist on the air in Tulsa -- Don Woods has that distinction -- his hiring represented a shift toward putting the science of forecasting in front of the viewers.

I remember seeing his first forecast on a TV in some storefront in the lower level of Southroads Mall. (Not Looboyles, but right next to it, I think.) We joked about his intro the next day at school: "How's the weather, Gary?" "Scary!"

He was only 25 when he started at what was then KTEW (now KJRH) in 1978, where he was chief meteorologist until 1995. Shore later worked at KWMJ-53 in Tulsa, then moved on to Huntsville, working for the last six and a half years at KCAU in Sioux City. A couple of memories from his co-workers:

"I always got a kick out of Gary. He had such a broad knowledge, and a LOVE of the weather, that he could talk about it forever. When ever we had time to fill, we knew we could count on Gary to fill the time. A lot of people didn't realize just how much Gary liked it here. He loved how crazy the weather could be here." -- Anchor Larry Wentz.

"Gary always had a song in his heart. No matter if he was on his way into work or just walking down the hall, he was always humming a tune. It was that love of life that he brought to his weather forecasts and to Siouxland." -- Anchor Jenna Rehnstrom.

Gary Shore had fond memories of his time in Tulsa and is remembered fondly here as well.

The weather won't be very interesting where he's headed, but that'll just open up more time for singing. May he rest in peace.

(Found via the TulsaNow Forum.)

MORE: Dan Satterfield remembers the man to whom he owes his career:

I first met Gary Shore in the Summer of 1979. I had written him a letter asking if by chance he needed a weather intern. I was a second year college student majoring in Meteorology at the University of Oklahoma.

Gary was the Chief Meteorologist at the NBC affilliate KJRH TV in Tulsa. He had taken the town by storm. He had a Masters degree in Meteorology, and had already nailed some incredible forecasts. One in particular I remember is his forecast of three inches of snow. The local NWS office was forecasting flurries and so was every other TV guy in town. Not Gary, He was insistent that we were in for a significant snow fall.

Tulsa had 3 inches and Gary was the talk of the town....

I stood up at his wedding and he was best man at mine. We kept in touch and if I ever had a really tough snow forecast, I always gave him a call. Most of the time I had it right- because I learned from the best.

I do mean the best. I know of no one who was a better forecaster. Many people in Mannford Oklahoma owe there lives to his Tornado warning and there many other towns where people can say the same. There are a several people who are now working in cities big and small as forecasters both on air and off who owe Gary a debt of gratitude.

(Via Bubbaworld.)

STILL MORE: KJRH has a tribute page to Gary Shore, with a brief clip from a promo from his days at Channel 2. They also link to a tribute section of their forum and a tribute page on the KCAU website.

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2 Comments

pgcfriend said:

WOW. I remember when he became a Christian in the 90s. He had such a beautiful smile on his face. From time to time he would visit the church I was attending. I think he and his family were members of Victory Christian Center for a time. Their first little one was a baby at the time. I'm sure his light was shining at KCAU. He's at his real home:) May the Lord bring comfort to his family.

dphansen Author Profile Page said:

Gary has been a guiding light in my life since 1978. As a Tulsa resident he guided my choices in clothing and daily activities. Eventually, my path led me to rural Iowa. Our friendship grew deeper, six years ago, when he started guiding my choices once again. Gary was like an old friend and a kindred spirit. I will miss his beauty and comfort.

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