Western mourns passing of meteorology legend

Dr. Mel Goldstein, “Dr. Mel” as he was known to hundreds of thousands of television weather viewers, died Jan. 18, 2012, at the age of 66. His passing was marked with great sadness among the community at Western, where Dr. Mel was an institution.

He courageously battled multiple myeloma, a form of cancer, for more than 15 years. Because of his deteriorating health, he had retired recently after 25 years at WTNH News Channel 8. Dr. Mel lived in Guilford with his wife Arlene. The two were married as undergraduates at Penn State in 1965. They have two daughters, Laura and Melodie.

“While Dr. Mel has touched the life of nearly everyone in Connecticut over the past four decades, his imprint on Western Connecticut State University has been especially significant,” said university President James Schmotter. “Not only did Dr. Mel begin our meteorology program — still the only one of its kind in the state — and our weather center, he was an inspiring mentor for generations of students. And the memories of all of us who had the good fortune to spend time with Dr. Mel will never fade. You could not help feeling better about the world and its future when you were around him.”

Long before he stood before a television camera, Dr. Mel was a professor at Western and he created the WCSU Weather Center, the first of its kind in New England. He retired from Western in 1986 after 27 years to become the chief meteorologist at WTNH-TV. But he never forgot his roots and visited Western often to share his expertise and to encourage students and faculty to continue their pursuits. Last spring Dr. Mel presented the annual President’s Lecture to a packed house in the Science Building.

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Dr. Mel Goldstein, veteran TV weather forecaster and founder of the WCSU meteorology program, shares his legendary smile during his visit to the university in March 2011 to deliver the annual President’s Lecture.