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'GMA' weather anchor Sam Champion's father dies

Sam Champion of GMA "Good Morning America" weather anchor Sam Champion tweeted Monday that he was with his family at his father's bedside, and likely wouldn't be back to "GMA" this week.

Lt. Col. James H. Champion died that night at age 75, ABC News reported Tuesday.

The elder Champion enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1953 and served in Japan and Hawaii before getting a college degree, ABC reports. He returned to active duty in 1962 and later served in Vietnam, earning two bronze stars and other decorations in combat that included the Tet Offensive. He retired from active duty in 1981.

In addition to Sam, James Champion is survived by his wife, Sylvia, daughter Teresa and her husband, and two grandchildren. Details about his cause of death were not released.

Sam's "tight-knit military family is strong and hanging together to face their time of grief," the executive producer of "GMA" wrote in a message to the show's staff Tuesday. Champion has been the "GMA" weather guy since 2006.

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Sam Champion at a New York event in 2008. Credit: Peter Kramer / Associated Press

Comments () | Archives (18)

Dear Sam and the Champion Family, Our thoughts and prayers are with you for the loss your father. Your family should be very proud of the devotion he served for our country.

Dear Sam

I watch GMA every morning and while getting ready for work this morning I heard about your Dad.

Families really pull together during these heart wrenching times but it sounds like your family has been connected at the hip for many years. What a wonderful memory for all of you.

My deepest condolences to you and your family. I will miss you wonderful laugh this week in your absence.

God Bless,


May God be with you, and your entire family. Your Dad was a HERO in more ways then one.. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you, and deep condolences. Elvira

God be with you and your family at this time - love to all of you.

Dear Sam and Champion Family,

My deepest condolences to you and your family. Knowing how connected you all are will be such a help under these heart wrenching times. There are no words to say that will truly help. May the good Lord be with you and your family and carry you through your loss.

Know that your fans are with you and are praying for you. I thank you father for his service to this great nation.

God Bless,


Hi Sam I'm so very sorry to here about you and families lost of your father. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family in your time of grief. Stay strong. And remember he is still watching over you.

Thoughts and prayers to you and your family during this time of loss.

Joei Carlton Hossack

Dear Sam:

I am truly sorry for the lose of your dad, I hope in the weeks that follow that god gives you people and situations to help you and your family. Know that everyday I will keep you and your family in my prays. God Bless

Our most sincere condolences on the loss of your Dad. His work on earth is done and he's been called home. Whatever your beliefs may be, believe that his spirit will always be with you and your family, until you meet once again. God Bless you all.

Our prayers are with you and your family. Its not easy to say good bye. Pray to God for strength. We miss you.
God bless

I want to send thoughts of sincere sympatyh to Sam . He is such a bright personality, and I'm sure a credit to his family.

Sam & Champion Family,
I'm so sorry for the loss of your wonderful Father.You will all be in my prayers. Take comfort in knowing he is at peace with God. I thank your Father for bringing you into our lives every morning. I can tell you are kind and loving and that comes from your wonderful family and upbringing. My deepest condolences at this difficult time.
Christina Marroquin and Family
San Diego, CA

I really enjoy watching you do the weather every morning. You and your family are in my prayers. Be blessed, God takes only the best.


Our prayers and thoughts are with you and your family!

Durning these tough times, your family has the support of everyone as we are fortunate to have had a person like your Dad to fight for our country!

We miss your weather forecast and and funny laughs on GMA.

God Bless you and your family!

Dear Sam,

I am sorry about the loss of your father. I am so glad you were able to be with him during his final hours. I wouldn't take anything for the time I was able to say good-bye to my brother. That, with the Lord's help sustains me when I am missing he or my own dear father.

I will pray for you, your mom, and sister that God will comfort and sustain you in your time of grief and in the coming months ahead. God be with you.

My deepest sympathy to Sam and his entire family.
I look forward to Sam on GMA daily.............what a nice guy.


My heart goes out to you it is the worst thing to go through and your dad was young. He will be forever in your heart. My deepest sympathy

Dear Sam & family,
Our thoughts and prayers are with you as you go through this most difficult time. Just know that you are missed on GMA, and we are glad you are where you belong. Your dad is in good hands...and has blessed our country with his service-we are very thankful.
May your family feel the love of God as He wraps his loving arms around you all and helps you through this most difficult time.
God bless you ,

stell & family


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