On Wednesday, November 15, the snow-loving community received somber news through Western UP Trail Reports’ Facebook post – the legendary meteorologist, John Dee Snow Central, had passed away. Fans and followers expressed their grief, reminiscing about the man who was a trailblazer in reporting snow conditions to snowmobiling enthusiasts. In an outpouring of condolences, the Western UP Trail Reports conveyed their deep sympathies to Nora, John’s daughter, and his extended family and friends.
The Meteorologist Who Made Snow Exciting
John Dee, born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago, was like any other child captivated by the magic of snow. His fascination with snowflakes falling gently under the spotlight led him on a journey that would intertwine his love for snow with his professional career. After attending the University of Wyoming and later Purdue University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Meteorology, John embarked on a meteorological career that spanned both public and private sectors.
His initial stint with the National Weather Service in Washington D.C. was followed by 18 years as a private meteorologist working independently, providing custom weather forecasts. In January of 1999, John made a pivotal decision to move his offices to the Keweenaw Peninsula of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It was a strategic move to ground zero for snowfall in the Midwest, an area averaging 240 inches of snow annually, with a record-breaking 390 inches in the winter of 1978-79.
The Keweenaw Peninsula: A Snowy Paradise
John’s move to the Keweenaw Peninsula was not just a professional choice but a lifestyle change. The peninsula, with its picturesque landscapes and abundant snowfall, offered a perfect backdrop for someone who had made a career out of predicting the whims of weather. Summers were equally enchanting with mild temperatures and low humidity, making it a year-round haven for John and his family.
In November 2002, John’s life took another beautiful turn when he met Nora. Their connection blossomed, and by June 2003, Nora joined John and his dogs in the Keweenaw. The following year, on October 9, 2004, they celebrated their union in marriage. In August 2009, their family grew with the adoption of a little girl named Grace, described by John as a “magical gift.”
A Family and a Legacy
The picture painted by John’s words on his official website, johndee.com, captures a snapshot of his life – a happy family surrounded by love, dogs, and the beauty of the Keweenaw Peninsula. The passing of their beloved dogs, Huck in May 2021 and Millie in March 2019, marked moments of sadness, but their memories continued to live on in the hearts of the Dee family.
As John’s legacy, both personal and professional, unfolded, he became more than just a meteorologist; he became a cherished figure in the hearts of snow enthusiasts. His dedication to providing accurate, honest, and kind snow condition reports through John Dee Snow Central made him a trusted source for snowmobilers and winter sports enthusiasts alike.
A Final Goodbye
The news of John Dee’s passing has left a void in the snow-loving community. The outpouring of condolences on Western UP Trail Reports’ Facebook page is a testament to the impact he had on the lives of those who shared his passion for snow. His website, once a hub for snow conditions, now serves as a digital memorial to a man who brought joy to many through his meteorological insights.
In the wake of this loss, the snow-covered trails may seem a bit quieter, the snowflakes falling a touch softer, but the memories and contributions of John Dee Snow Central will forever echo in the hearts of those who loved and followed him. As we say our final goodbyes, let us remember the man who made snow exciting, and whose legacy will continue to shape the winter wonderland he so dearly loved.