UPTON, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — He’s certainly seen his fair share of sunny and stormy days.
At 101, Richard G. Hendrickson, of Bridgehampton, is the world’s oldest weatherman. When he logged his first observation for the U.S. Weather Bureau — now the National Weather Service — Herbert Hoover was president.
Since then, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Hendrickson, a retired dairy and chicken farmer, has filed twice-daily reports, logging more than 150,000 weather observations.
When asked Wednesday if he has ever missed a day during his eight decade-plus career, Hendrickson told CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan, “Oh no! With a hurricane I might have been a little late.”
Always using pencil and paper, Hendrickson has gathered information from the weather observing station on his farm and then used his rotary telephone to call in his observations, including temperature, precipitation, wind and any other significant weather factors, to the weather service.
“The fact the data was coming from the exact same spot using the exact same methods created an immense value and ties it to the entire fabric of climatology of the United States,” said Tim Morrin, an observation program leader for the National Weather Service.
Hendrickson began volunteering as a weather observer when he was 18. His family thinks he is the happiest and most fulfilled man alive.
“I did something for the community or government and that makes you feel a little good inside,” Hendrickson said.
On July 27, Hendrickson will receive an award from the NOAA for his 84 years of service.
The new 80-year service award will be named in his honor.
Hendrickson told McLogan he has no plans to retire from his labor of love any time soon.
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