Great Blizzard Anniversary
March 13-14 marks the 20th anniversary of one of the greatest snowstorms of our lifetime. Unless you were around for the Thanksgiving Blizzard of 1950, chances are this is the one you tell your kids and grand-kids about.
On Wednesday, I look back on the blizzard’s legacy through the words of our viewers who visited the WSAZ booth this past weekend at the Home and Garden Show and through the video our photojournalists recorded that fateful weekend.
While the snow technically began on the 12th, around 11pm, this is really a story of the 13-14th.
I still recall WSAZ alum and dear friend Sheila Gray telling me years later, “I looked in your eyes that night and knew this time you were serious”. Sheila ran out to the grocery store after the 11pm newscast only to find 1 loaf of bread a few cans of tuna.
You see for my first 5 winters here at WSAZ, I loved to talk about snow, but accumulations were always tempered. That spoke to the learning curve I had to go through to understand the fickle patterns of Appalachia.
For my part, I parked at the downtown Radisson Hotel that weekend as we broadcasted morning, noon and night during this historic storm. I still remember my nightly walk from the studio to the hotel. A mere 4 block jaunt, the snow was knee deep in many places. Of course I walked on the deserted streets which had been plowed and made for a more secure trip.
My most vivid memory in the wee hours of the morning was of dump trucks and bulldozers plowing, hoisting and carrying the snow from 4th avenue down to the Ohio River.
Check out the enclosed video. You will be impressed by the blinding snows and deep accumulations!