He witnessed hurricane as kid; now, he brings you the weather

If you are one of those early risers who loves The Weather Channel, you are right if that guy at 5 a.m. telling you about storms looks familiar.

Rock Hill native Scott Williams, Rock Hill High School class of 2000, joined the hugely popular network this summer as one of its on-air meteorologists.

And it is all because of Hurricane Hugo.

Twenty years ago this month when Hugo struck, Scott Williams, who loved the weather as a tiny lad, decided he would be a meteorologist.

Hugo blasted from the coast up through York County, creating havoc that wasn't lost on a young man at Sylvia Circle Elementary.

"The path of Hugo somewhat created my path into meteorology," Williams said. "As a kid, I always found the weather fascinating. I loved to watch The Weather Channel when I was young. Yet Hurricane Hugo changed my life."

Hugo, with its ripping winds and sheets of rain, snared Williams, who even before that was trying to watch the weather on television while his sisters and others wanted to watch other stuff.

He recalls to this day the damage of Hugo, the sound of the wind. Then seeing the downed trees, the power out for two weeks and the devastation.

"I vividly remember my parents filling the bathtub with water so that we had water in case there wasn't any," Williams recalled. "Then afterward, seeing what the weather could do. Then how the community came together, the barbecues, the sense of community."