Wednesday morning was ABC weather anchor Sam Champion’s final day at Good Morning America. Champion, who has been with the network for 25 years, announced earlier this week that he is leaving to join the Weather Channel. His co-anchors, Robin Roberts, George Stephanopoulos, Josh Elliott, and Lara Spencer, bid him farewell with a series of career retrospective videos, funny green-screen moments, and celebrity well-wishers.
“You encompass all that is good and right in this world,” Robin Roberts said, “and you show it each and every day when you show up here.” They played a reel of Champion’s globe-trekking career, where he reported on everything from levee leaks and the Joplin tornadoes to Hurricane Sandy and the Icelandic glaciers.
“It’s been a gift to work with you each and every day, Sam,” said Elliott, who got quite choked up saying his farewells.
“I love you guys more than I can express,” Champion said. “I’ve had the extreme joy that I don’t think very many people will ever know of working with your friends and your family. This will always be my home.”
Watch Champion’s farewell below, with a special message from Britney Spears (who knew she was a five-day forecast fan!):
Elliott introduced a special “Play of the Day” featuring Champion’s best James Bond and Game of Thrones moments, which were green-screened, of course:
Champion completed his final weather forecast outside in the nippy midtown New York City air, among cheering fans. He gave the national forecast as well as the five-day forecast for Atlanta — his new home and the headquarters of The Weather Channel.
Watch his final weather report below:
Ginger Zee will take over Champion’s position at Good Morning America. What are your favorite memories of the weather anchor, PopWatchers?