Local Texas weather forecaster ‘a smile as big as Texas’ dies suddenly

KCBD in Lubbock, Texas honored late weather forecaster Kelly Plasker on Sunday night, calling her a “bright spot in our weekend mornings, and in our lives.”

Plasker, 42, was with KCBD, an NBC affiliate, for three years before her death, according to the station.

News anchor Kase Wilbanks said that Plasker’s “sudden death early this morning has broken our hearts.”

Though the cause of death has yet to be released, Wilbanks urged viewers during the tribute to “ask for help if you’re struggling or had thoughts of suicide” and shared contact information for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Plasker’s death comes two years after her 19-year-old son, Thomas Locke, who died by suicide.

Rosalie Drake, market president for Townsquare Media also made a statement saying, “We are all mourning the loss of Kelly Plasker. Not just her family, and not just her work family. Everyone in Lubbock who knew her knows we’ve lost someone special, and the world is now a little less bright.”

The Twitter community mourned the forecasters unexpected passing on social media.

“Kelly Plasker had a smile as big as Texas and a heart of gold. She loved big and hurt deeply. Her heart was broken from the suicide death of her son Thomas, and then her father’s sudden death just months later,” journalist Sharon Maines wrote on Facebook.

“Her grief was a daily struggle but she put on that smile and persevered,” she continued. “If any of you are struggling—please, please, please talk to someone. There are so many broken hearts today. Prayers for Kelly’s two children and her family and all of us who loved her.”

KCBD vice president and general manager Dan Jackson said in a statement, “we are deeply saddened by the tragic and sudden loss of KCBD weekend morning forecaster Kelly Plasker. Kelly was a dedicated member of the KCBD weather staff, well-liked by viewers and admired by her co-workers. Our deepest sympathies go out to Kelly’s family in this time of great loss.”

Among the kind words and condolences on social media following Plasker’s tragic passing, the call to action to seek help was widespread.

“People you know are experiencing pain you will never understand. Consider kindness and empathy,” meteorologist James Spann wrote on Twitter. “Getting help is not a sign of weakness, but a show of strength.”



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