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Barry Burbank Celebrates 35 Years At WBZ-TV

By Terry Eliasen, Meteorologist, WBZ-TV Exec. Weather Producer
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BOSTON (CBS) – March 1st, 1978.

Were you in New England on that day?

Do you think you may have been watching TV, more specifically WBZ?

Were you even alive back then?

If you answered yes to all the questions above you just may have witnessed the birth of a New England legend.

It was 35 years ago that Barry Burbank began his career in Boston as a meteorologist, right here on WBZ.

Photos: Barry Burbank’s 35 Years At WBZ

35 years on TV is truly amazing, but doing it all at one station, nearly unheard of.

Watch: Barry’s ‘Old School’ Weather Recap

It is an accomplishment that Barry has all to himself, no other meteorologist currently on TV has been at one station as long.

In fact, no other meteorologist in the history of WBZ has ever made it this far, this long.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Karen Twomey reports

Barry is a native of Maine. He has loved weather ever since he was a child. In fact, as a small boy, Barry actually designed and built a mock weather set in his bedroom. He built it to be an exact replica of WBZ-TV at the time. He would pretend to forecast the weather from his bedroom, dreaming one day of doing it for real and working side by side with his idol, Don Kent.

In 1972, Barry earned his degree in meteorology from Lowell Technical Institute (currently known as UMass-Lowell). He started his career at WCSH-TV6 in Portland, Maine in February of 1976. And would you believe he was Maine’s first professional television meteorologist!

Meteorologist Barry Burbank gives the forecast on his first day at WBZ-TV in 1978.

Meteorologist Barry Burbank gives the forecast on his first day at WBZ-TV in 1978.

Just two weeks after the infamous Blizzard of ’78, Barry’s dream became a reality.  He was hired by WBZ as the station’s weekend meteorologist. From the WBZ set in his bedroom to the real thing, the career he had trained his whole life for had become a reality. He was living out his childhood dream, working at WBZ right along-side his idol, Don Kent.

And 35 years later, he is still going, now a household name synonymous with weather in southern New England.

Those who know Barry know that his life is about so much more than weather.

If you haven’t had the privilege of meeting him, let me tell you a bit about the real Barry, the guy behind the camera. He is everything you may think he is from seeing him on TV and then some.

He is, of course, a brilliant meteorologist, one of the best in the country, no doubt. But Barry’s true strength lies as a friend, a husband and a father. Simply put, he is one of the most kind, honest, down to Earth, genuine human beings I have ever met. You cannot help but be a better person just for knowing him.

Barry is also insanely loyal.

He has literally given WBZ years of his life, working weeks at a time, holidays, weekends you name it. In fact, many years ago when Barry was struggling with back trouble, he literally crawled on his hands and knees from his car into work, talk about dedication!

Web Extra: David Wade talks to Barry about 35 years at WBZ

He has logged more hours visiting schools than probably all the other meteorologists in town put together, touching the lives of tens of thousands of kids.

Yet, despite seemingly giving everything he has to WBZ, he always has put his family first. He was there for countless soccer games and track meets, recording every kick and jump, cheering on his three beautiful children. He has always been their number one fan.

And all his hard work as a dad has clearly paid off. His kids have grown up to be the perfect mix of Barry and his wife Louisa.

I believe that he views them as his greatest achievement.  Now all married and very successful, his kids remain very close with Barry and his wife. They still go away on family trips, just a bit larger now with spouses and a new grandchild in the family. They also enjoy skiing and hiking together, a couple of Barry’s passions.

I have certainly learned and benefited greatly from the 12 years Barry and I have been friends.  All of the countless hours spent discussing weather and covering storms have been invaluable to me.  But more than anything I treasure the time we have spent discussing life and family. Barry has given me something to strive for, much more important than making the perfect forecast – to be a better husband, a better father, and a better human being.

So join me in congratulating Barry on 35 amazing years and here’s to 35 more!

Congrats Barry.

You can follow Terry on Twitter at @TerryWBZ.

You can follow Barry on Twitter at @BarryWBZ.

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