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Storm chasers around the U.S. honor ‘Twister’ star Bill Paxton

Keep the tissue box nearby.


Phillip Tracy


Posted on Feb 27, 2017   Updated on May 24, 2021, 10:31 pm CDT

Storm chasers coordinated a touching tribute to the late actor Bill Paxton soon after the announcement of his death.

Using Spotter Network and GPS coordinates, nearly 200 storm chasers lined up to spell out Paxton’s initials above the backdrop of tornado alley, from Wichita, Kansas to southern Oklahoma.

Here is the full tribute:

Paxton starred as the lead weather researcher in the 1996 film Twister, where he and Helen Hunt go on a dangerous mission to launch a new tornado data-gathering instrument. The film received middling reviews, but became an instant classic and inspired storm chasing around the world.

“There are probably hundreds, if not thousands, of meteorologists today—myself included—who were impacted by the movie Twister and the role Bill played in that,” John Wetter, president of WxChaser told the Associated Press in a phone interview. ‘Twister was kind of the first time in a mass media marketplace the meteorologist became cool, if only for a little while.”  

Bill Paxton died on Sunday due to complications from heart surgery. He was 61.  

H/T ABC News

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*First Published: Feb 27, 2017, 2:09 am CST