Morning shows are a great way to start the day for so many of us. It's a quick way to get caught up on current events, and overtime, we grow accustomed to seeing certain anchors on TV. But now, a legendary weatherman, Willard Scott, will no longer grace our screens.
What happened to Willard Scott? It was just announced that he passed away. Although he had other TV roles, later on in his life, he was The Today Show's weatherman for decades until his retirement. Here's what we know about what happened and his cause of death.
What happened to Willard Scott?
According to The New York Times, Willard died on Sept. 4, 2021, at the age of 87. It was confirmed by his wife, Paris Keena Scott, that he passed at his farm in Delaplane, VA. He had worked for The Today Show for more than 40 years and he began his run with the broadcaster in 1980. Fellow host, Al Roker, thought of him like a second father.
"He was truly my second dad and am where I am today because of his generous spirit," Al Roker tweeted in part. "Willard was truly a broadcast #icon." In another tweet, Al shares a tribute for Willard from The Today Show saying "he was America’s Weatherman to the entire country. No broadcaster was loved by so many and brought so many smiles."
What was Willard Scott's cause of death?
The NYT article says that Paris hasn't specifically said how her husband died. But she did say that he passed after battling "a brief illness." Considering that many people are still dying from COVID-19, it is possible he may have been exposed to the virus, especially now with a more contagious Delta variant around. Although, nothing has been confirmed just yet, there are also reports that say Willard died of natural causes.
Although Willard was known for his time on The Today Show, he had an even bigger reputation for his personality and the impact he had on the lives of others. Aside from working with Al, he also sat alongside Katie Couric, who tweeted kind words about him as well. "I am heartbroken that the much loved Willard Scott has passed away," she said. "He played such an outsized role in my life & was as warm & loving & generous off camera as he was on."
Willard was also known for the celebrations he would throw for people's 100th birthdays. Previously, those individuals would have their pictures displayed on Smuckers jelly jars. The company also tweeted their condolences for the weatherman. "He was a special person, and we are grateful to have had the privilege of partnering with him for more than two decades," the company said. "May the smiles that he brought to others live on, well beyond 100 years."