After 37 years WTVG Weatherman William “Blizzard Bill” Spencer will announce his retirement for health reasons today during the station's morning newscast.
The 62 year old Spencer has been on medical leave and off the air for almost a year after the collapse of the top vertebra of his spine onto his nervous system, causing daily episodes of losing focus, balance, stuttering, sharp stabs of pain in his head and neck, and temporary bouts of confusion.
“We've been in touch with him” during his medical leave while he received treatments, said WTVG executive news editor Brian Trauring. “We were hoping that he would be able to return. But he's decided he's just not able to do that ... that it's time for him to focus on continuing to get well.”
Spencer also was off the air for more than three months in the late summer and early fall of 2013 from a serious bacterial infection, likely exacerbated by possible Lyme disease, that nearly killed him.
To honor Spencer, Channel 13 will have “Blizzard Bill” Spencer Day on Friday, with Spencer on air during the station’s morning and evening newscasts, along with tributes from WTVG staff, station viewers, and community leaders.
WTVG meteorologist Ross Ellet, who temporarily replaced the ailing Spencer for the station's morning and noon newscasts, will now officially assume that time slot and role.
Trauring said the station will hire a weekend meteorologist/eporter to replace Ellet.
H/T Toledo Blade