The Alan Sealls to WPMI rumors are swirling in light of Chief Meteorologist Chris Dunn’s announcement on Facebook Monday that he has left the NBC affiliate to spend more time with his family.
“Twenty-nine years ago I began my career in TV news. It comes to an end Tuesday,” Dunn wrote.
Dunn joined WPMI four years ago to replace Derek Beasley after stints in Phoenix, Denver, Philadelphia, Salt Lake City and Miami. He also is known as The Flying Weatherman, as he is an avid pilot. His tenure at WPMI was almost four years to the day.
Dunn posted he had been offered an opportunity to stay at WPMI a few months longer, but opted to end his time with the station this week in order to spend more time with his son, who is a high school senior.
“The biggest deciding factor is TIME with my family. My son is graduating from high school next spring … we only have one … and my wife has been a single parent five nights a week,” Dunn wrote. “TIME is the one thing you can never get back and I don’t want to look back wishing, thinking I should have taken a step back when I had the chance. By many measures I have had great success in this business, but have also seen a tremendous amount of change. Career advancement and financial success is no match for getting that family time you can never get back! Other jobs will always be there.”
Dunn was a solid meteorologist, but in a business where the weatherman is frequently the most popular person on air at each station, he faced tough competition from WKRG’s Sealls and WALA’s Jason Smith. The internet may best remember Dunn’s time in Mobile for years to come due to a viral video of an on-air gaff that drew international attention and was even shown on “The Tonight Show.”
The timing and Dunn’s admission that he was offered an opportunity to stay on for a few months would tend to lend credence to the rumors former WKRG Chief Meteorologist Alan Sealls could be taking his place. WPMI General Manager Bobby Totsch was also tight-lipped when asked about whether this means Sealls will be heading up weather at his station.
“There isn’t anything I have to say other than I think Chris did a great job for us and we are excited he will be able to be with his family as he indicates here,” Totsch wrote in an email.
Sealls, who writes a bi-weekly column called “Weather Things” for Lagniappe, has stated publicly he hopes to be back on the air in the Mobile market soon. He had a humorous but slightly cryptic answer to whether he’d be heading to WPMI.
“There’s a 100 percent chance of me returning to Mobile TV in several months. There’s a 50 percent chance that it will be either of the channels that is a multiple of 5!” Sealls wrote.
This page is available to subscribers. Click here to sign in or get access.
It looks like you are opening this page from the Facebook App. This article needs to be opened in the browser.
iOS: Tap the three dots in the top right, then tap on "Open in Safari".
Android: Tap the Settings icon (it looks like three horizontal lines), then tap App Settings, then toggle the "Open links externally" setting to On (it should turn from gray to blue).