Jim Bernard, easily one of the most visible people in Humboldt during his more than two decades as a meteorologist on local TV news programs, died Tuesday at his home in Westhaven. He was 64.
KIEM-TV, where Bernard spent the majority of his on-air career, announced the local institution’s passing on its website, noting that “it’s a sad day for the North Coast and weather fans.”
While working as an air traffic controller at ACV, Bernard began providing weather reports for KVIQ Channel 6’s newscasts. In 1996 he was hired by KIEM and remained with the station until health issues forced his retirement in 2012. Bernard also served as the director of the Del Norte County Regional Airport from 2005 to 2014.
During the final months of his on-air career viewers noted that Bernard’s speech had become slurred. On his last show Bernard addressed the issue and revealed that he’d developed ataxia, a neurological impairment that affects a person’s motor functions.
Below, watch a short News Channel 3-produced tribute celebrating Bernard’s career released at the time of his retirement. RIP, Jim.