Screengrab via KHOU/YouTube

What a haul.

A Houston area meteorologist got a big surprise this week, with hundreds of people who relied on him during the worst Texas natural disaster in recent memory coming together to fund his vacation.

The man in question is Jeff Lindner, the meteorologist in Harris County, one of the areas hardest-hit by Hurricane Harvey last week. Throughout the storm, Lindner was reportedly a stable, near-constant presence for Harris County residents, providing them with regular and clear updates about what to expect. Someone was so appreciative that they set up a GoFundMe page to buy him a vacation.

The page, set up by Blake Ford, lauds Lindner’s coverage of the storm. Specifically, it hails his “frankly fantastic vibe,” his apparent willingness to work around the clock to provide Harris County residents with constant updates, and his cool-headed demeanor.

“He had an answer ready for every question, every followup, and never once dodged a difficult question nor was he afraid to honestly inform the public of imminent trouble,” Ford wrote. “He looks like he’s hardly slept, or eaten in the last week. I think Jeff is gonna need a break.”

So far, the fundraiser has hauled in a lot more money than its goal. Initially set at a mere $4,000, it’s now swelled to more than $20,000 as of this writing, a trove of funds that Lindner can’t even claim. As a public official for Harris County, he’s reportedly not allowed to accept gifts totaling more than $100 in value.

That fact hasn’t stopped the donations from pouring in, however. The more than $20,000 trove was amassed in just three days. Despite the fact that Lindner himself can’t use the money, it’s expected to be put to positive use; according to an update Ford posted after speaking to Lindner, he intends to disburse the money to storm-related “charities, shelters, and flood victims.”

Chris Tognotti

Chris Tognotti

Chris Tognotti is a frequent contributor for the Daily Dot. He’s a news and current events writer based out of Berkeley, California, and a co-host of the podcast Now We Know. While he specializes in domestic politics and opinion writing, he’s also savvy on sports, video games, and film.

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