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Remembering Don Kent – Weatherman, Local Institution

Remembering Don Kent – Weatherman  It’s a sad day in the Bolton house today and a sad day in many Massachusetts households. One of our favorite citizens, Don Kent, passed away last night at the age of 92.  Don Kent was a meteorologist for 34 years for WBZ radio and TV. But he was much more than that.

My dad is the kind of guy they invented the Weather Channel for.  He’s been obsessed with the weather since he was a young boy, filling small notebooks with daily weather observations.

In our house, the weather report was  (and is!) sacred time.  No talking at the table was allowed during the weather.  Speak at your peril.

And for years it was Don Kent who gave the forecast.  He was the weatherman on Channel 4 from the 1950s to 1983.  He set the standard for weather reporting and was hugely popular in Massachusetts. He was a weather buff’s weatherman.

Here’s a video segment produced for Don Kent’s retirement from WBZ-TV:

In our family Don Kent was revered.  A story that we still tell gives some idea of how big a part he played in our daily life for decades.

I was a baby – about a year and a half old.  My grandparents were over for a visit and I was in my bedroom, babbling.  My grandfather, asked “What’s she saying in there?  Don Kent! Don Kent!”?

Though I would come to know and love our favorite weatherman I wasn’t that precocious.  I was calling “Down crib! Down crib!”. 

But to my grandfather, who well knew how important the weather was to his son-in-law, it made all the sense in the world that his small granddaughter was invoking the name of our local weatherman.

I had planned to write Mr. Kent to tell him that story and yet regretfully I never did. My sympathies to his family. I hope they know how much he meant to so many.

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  1. Bud Holland

    It seems unbelievable that Don Kent is no longer with us. My friend, Don Krus (who is now deceased) went to Boston approx. 20 yrs. ago and met with your Dad. They were so impressed with his warm welcome and special personality as we talked with him in his store. He will be so missed by many of us who met him and enjoyed his weather reports everday that he worked with WBZ. Our condolences to you all and just know that he has brought all the sunshine and warmth that he often talked about while broadcasting, into his special heavenly place.

    God’s Blessings to you all and look up towards the Heavenly place where he is and smile. He will love you for it.\

    Bud and Alice Holland

  2. paul cousins

    As my mentor, friend, and role model that i could never expect to match, Don’s passing is a deep loss to countless friends and family. I worked alongside Don during his final week’s prior to retiring from WBZ-TV in 1983 and they were some of the most rewarding, and I must say hilarious of my entire career. His selflessness, high spirits and spontaneity were were infectious: he delightedly all those around him. He launched dozens into the profession of broadcast meteorology, of which he was duly proud, and educated (subliminally) via his precient, insightful and enthusiastic on-air presentations the intricate and capricious nature of weather to millions througout New England. Don was a pioneer. God Bless him, and deepest sympathy i extend to his family.
    Paul Cousins, Portland, Maine.

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