John Edd Thompson
John Edd Thompson is a former chief meteorologist for WALA-TV in Mobile, Alabama. Thompson reported the weather for people on the central Gulf Coast since 1969. Thompson retired on June 5, 2009 to spend more time with family.
Life and career
Thompson, a Mobile native earned his degrees in geosciences and communications from Mississippi State University and the University of Alabama respectively. While studying journalism at the University of Alabama, Thompson decided he would rather pursue interests in radio and gained experience at WNPT-FM in Tuscaloosa. Thompson would later gain more radio experience in WARF in Jasper, Alabama, WTUF in Georgia and WABB in Mobile. In Mobile, he gained a job at WKRG doing a local country music show titled TV-5 Party Line. The station moved Thompson to weather in 1971, and he would end up doing weekend weather segments at WALA-TV in 1977, then affiliated with NBC. After six months, Thompson was moved to weekly weather. During Hurricane Katrina, Thompson found out on-air that his home in Dauphin Island was destroyed. "I didn't realize it was gone until I saw the aerial pictures the next morning," Thompson recalled in 2009. "Basically, since we were on the air I just kind of gulped and kept going." Thompson retired on June 5, 2009.
Thompson has several other interests, and has dabbled in music for three decades. He was one of the founding members of the Mobile Songwriters Association and a member of the Nashville Songwriters Association International. He also participates in the Frank Brown Songwriters Festival that is held every November in Gulf Shores, Alabama.
Thompson's last newscast was broadcast the night of Friday, June 5, 2009. The special newscast featured former WALA newscasters and reporters and sports personalities extending their thanks. On the special, Thompson announced he had taken a job in Los Angeles, California teaching acting students (however, this would be part-time). Thompson still resides in Mobile.
He is the grandfather of Brad, Caroline, Tanner, and Grace.
Awards and recognition
Since the Press-Register introduced its Readers' Choice Awards in 2002, the final results always placed Thompson first. In the past the Mobile Press Club named him "Best Weather Anchor", but Thompson's biggest honor from these industry professionals came in September 2005 with the John Harris Achievement Award for his contributions to broadcasting over a long period of time.
- Soultaker (News Anchor)
- In the Heat of the Night ("Bailiff" in episode "Unfinished Business")
- Bloodlines: Murder in the Family (Jail Guard)
- Felony (Reporter)
- He also made a cameo appearance in the movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which was filmed in Mobile and surrounding areas.
- Givens, Joshua (July 2013). "Spotlight: John Edd Thompson". Mobile Bay Magazine. Mobile.
- Brantley, Mike (April 22, 2009). "WALA-TV10 Chief Meteorologist John Edd Thompson leaving TV in June". Press-Register. Mobile.