Jay Walker, a longtime weathercaster for Fort Wayne ABC-affiliate WPTA, has died. He was 74.

Walker spent 30 years, from 1976 to 2006, as a weathercaster for WPTA, from 1976 to 2006. “Even though the weather was really important to him, people were more important, and the way he connected with viewers was amazing,” chief meteorologist Curtis Smith said in a WPTA tribute (watch above). “The way he connected with the audience, and the way they really felt like they knew him, was magical.”