Home­com­ing ends for Fox

Me­te­o­rol­o­gist had hoped to re­turn to News 8 full time

The Middletown Press (Middletown, CT) - - OBITUARIES - By Ran­dall Beach rbeach@nhreg­is­ter.com @rbeachNHR on Twit­ter Call Ran­dall Beach at 203-680-9345.

NEW HAVEN » Ge­off Fox, the well-known TV me­te­o­rol­o­gist who was re­hired by WTNH News 8 in June, has had his ser­vice there ter­mi­nated af­ter only about two months on the air.

Fox made the an­nounce­ment Mon­day on his Face­book page.

“Though our agree­ment was just for the sum­mer,” Fox wrote, “early on I made it clear to Chan­nel 8 I was in­ter­ested in a full-time po­si­tion. On Fri­day (Sept. 8) they made an of­fer for a part-time job. It was for less than I made when I first ar­rived in 1984. I had no choice but to re­ject that of­fer.”

But he added, “It was one of the tough­est de­ci­sions I’ve ever made.”

When asked for com­ment, WTNH News Di­rec­tor Keith Con­nors said in an email that the sta­tion is “build­ing the best weather team in Con­necti­cut” and has hired Joe Furey to be a part of that.

“We hoped Ge­off would be a part of our team,” Con­nors said. “But as he said on Face­book, we of­fered him an op­por­tu­nity to stay with Chan­nel 8 and he de­clined.”

Con­nors con­cluded: “We are grate­ful for all Ge­off did for WTNH this sum­mer and we wish him noth­ing but the best in the fu­ture.”

The New Haven Reg­is­ter June 28 broke the story that Fox, although now liv­ing in Cal­i­for­nia, had been re­hired by Chan­nel 8 to do evening weather re­ports out of his self-built home stu­dio. He said this was not a prob­lem be­cause he could an­a­lyze Con­necti­cut weather data from out-of­s­tate.

Fox spent 27 years with Chan­nel 8 while liv­ing in the New Haven area. He was shocked in 2011 when his con­tract was not re­newed. He then worked for WTIC (FOX CT, Chan­nel 61) for 19 months but lost that job be­cause of in­ap­pro­pri­ate use of so­cial me­dia, which then be­came pub­lic.

Fox be­came a sym­pa­thetic fig­ure last year when he re­vealed on his blog (www.ge­off­fox.com) he was com­bat­ting pan­cre­atic can­cer. When asked dur­ing a phone in­ter­view Tues­day how he is do­ing on that front, he said, “All my treat­ment is over. The chemo­ther­apy left me ex­tremely weak. It turned out I had an iron de­fi­ciency, so I got an iron in­fu­sion. And now I seem to be great.”

Fox added, “I’m feel­ing re­ally great.” But then, al­lud­ing to los­ing his WTNH job, he said, “I’m very dis­ap­pointed. And I’m sad.”

He com­pared his sit­u­a­tion to Charles Schulz’ long-run­ning “Peanuts” comic strip gag in which Lucy pulls away the foot­ball from Char­lie Brown at the last sec­ond as he runs up to kick it, leav­ing him fly­ing through the air in an­guish.

“I feel like Char­lie Brown with Lucy. This is the sec­ond time they’ve pulled away the ball.”

Fox main­tained, “I was blind­sided by this de­ci­sion. There was never an inkling. Then I learned they had hired Joe Furey.” Furey formerly worked for WTIC (FOX CT, Chan­nel 61).

Fox added, “I don’t know what more I could have done to prove my worth to them and the view­ers. I re­ally wanted that job. I did a great job for them this sum­mer, and the re­sponse in so­cial me­dia shows that.”

Fox said he was work­ing full-time be­cause his hours were 3 p.m. to 11:35 p.m. East­ern time. He said he of­ten did the shows that aired at 5 p.m., 6 p.m., 10 p.m. and 11 p.m.

He stressed he en­joyed work­ing at Chan­nel 8 again. “I had a won­der­ful time. The peo­ple I worked with were great. I was re­ally happy to have that op­por­tu­nity and I wish it had con­tin­ued.”

On his Face­book post­ing, Fox wrote: “Be­ing back on Chan­nel 8 was a fan­tasy come true. You guys have been so sup­port­ive. This was my op­por­tu­nity to show my grat­i­tude. And it was a sign my life had turned around. I started back on News 8 as chemo­ther­apy ended. A year ear­lier I ex­pected to die. In­stead I was com­ing home.”

Ge­off Fox

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