Meteorologist Ian Leonard Opens Up About His Health After Invasive Questions About His Appearance

Everyone wants to know everything about everyone, but Ian Leonard’s lack of a tie may not be our business.

Jamie Lerner - Author

Mar. 19 2024, Published 11:30 a.m. ET

Sometimes it’s easy to forget that meteorologists are just like us. Well, anyone we see on television and in films is human, but those working for news networks as journalists, meteorologists, onsite reporters, and more are especially relatable. Now, meteorologist Ian Leonard is the subject of many invasive questions about his appearance.

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The Fox 9 chief meteorologist has been seen not wearing a tie and with some red splotches on his face. This has led to viewers asking questions about what happened to him and if he’s OK. While it’s none of our business, Ian graciously wrote a blog post about what he’s been going through.

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What happened to Ian Leonard? He hasn’t been wearing a tie.

In recent weeks, viewers have noticed changes in Ian’s skin as well as his lack of wearing a tie. In fact, he shared in a blog post that colleagues have emailed him in disparaging tones about his appearance as of late. “Why are you so casual? Please put the tie back on to keep your level of professionalism high for you and your peers,” one email said.

Another viewer wrote to him asking, “What’s up with your face?” which is just a completely inappropriate question. And while Ian has no responsibility to tell us the ins and outs of his personal life, he has been documenting his journey openly with skin cancer since Day 1 in January 2017 in a blog.

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Ian Leonard hasn’t been wearing a tie because he has skin cancer again.

Ian has been battling skin cancer for over seven years. While it has come and gone, it’s back again in 2024 for the third time, which is far from ideal for Ian. He’d probably love to wear a tie, but, he explains, “It literally hurts to wear a tie. The knot rests right on the area where a couple of deep scars now sit. It rubs the area raw in a short period of time.”

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When Ian first began his journey with cancer, he wrote about the apprehension of using topical chemotherapy as he shared photos throughout the experience. In the photos, his skin turns bright red in what appears to be a very painful process. But with skin cancer, that’s the most effective treatment.

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Now, seven years later, Ian is more accustomed to it but it’s still extremely painful. He writes in response to people asking about his face, “The result of another round of topical chemo. I almost forgot how much that stuff hurts. Almost. It is a necessary evil, I have skin cancer. But man it hurts. It burns. It is very uncomfortable. And it is impossible to hide. My entire forehead, blotchy and red like a billboard that says, ‘Look right here!’”

In 2017, Ian had surgery in addition to using topical chemotherapy, which caused him to lose a third of his lower lip, requiring over 70 stitches.

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Ian reminds us to be kind when asking questions. “The next time you want to ask someone a question about their tie … or lack thereof, be a little nicer. You never know what the answer will be.” We are hoping for the best for Ian and his family as he battles cancer once again.

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