ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Navy Veteran, weather forecaster, Former Ben Richey Boys Ranch President. Charlie Jordan, by all accounts, was a character. Pouring his all into everything he did, Jordan left a legacy to learn from after his recent passing at the age of 86.
Charlie Jordan’s impact on KTAB News:
“I’ve been at KTAB for 43 years, and we’ve gone through a lot of employees… But there are a few that you always remember, and certainly, Charlie was one that you always remember,” said KTAB Anchor and former co-worker, Bob Bartlett.
Jordan’s on-air claim to fame; a unique form of weather casting that was, by his own records, 99% accurate, but with a presentation that most any viewer could grasp.
“Charlie showed that you could give the weather, but yet, connect in a way that everybody felt like they knew it,” KTAB Chief Meteorologist, Sam Nichols recalled.
If a large thunderstorm was headed towards Abilene, Jordan might say something like, “Y’know this thingamajig is gonna come down here, meet warm air, and we’re gonna have a frog strangler,” described KRBC Anchor and former KTAB co-worker, David Bacon.
Charlie Jordan’s impact on KRBC News:
This personable and rural demeanor was quite the opposite of Jordan’s credentials, per Bacon, but entirely intentional, so as to better connect with the audience.
“He had a Master’s degree from Pepperdine. But when you would listen to him on the air, you would think well he just rolled in off the turnip truck,” Bacon painted the picture.
Fittingly so, as vegetables were a large part of his presentation. Jordan regularly featured interesting veggies that viewers would send in from around the Big Country, though not all of them made it safely through the newscast. One 4-foot gourd Bacon remembered fell to disaster one night.
“Charlie tried to hold it up like a baseball bat,” Bacon began. “Well, the thing snapped in two on air, fell on the ground, and made a huge mess. But he just kept on going. We all laughed about it. ‘Here’s the final forecast, and thanks for watching.'”
Charlie Jordan’s light and levity are another characteristic he carried into whatever job he held. Ben Richey Boys Ranch President, Kerry Fortune credited Jordan with a wealth of knowledge and compassion during his time as ranch president.
“When he started, it was called the Abilene Boys Ranch. He was instrumental in getting it changed to honor Mr. Richey,” said Fortune. “He would look at that kid and say, ‘there’s a good kid in there, we just gotta get to him.'”
No matter the task at hand, Jordan was remembered as a man who gave 100%. Routinely, working overtime both on and off the air.
“Oh, Charlie was a person that was very gung-ho about whatever he did… He just loved people, and he wanted to see people succeed in life,” Fortune continued.
Bartlett included, “He did not live by the clock. He lived by whatever story he had to tell, and yes, occasionally he would go very long.”
Remembered now for his commitment to each and every life he touched, never letting the time he put in get in the way of the result he knew was possible, those once close to him remembered him to work with anyone and everyone to help them achieve their full potential.
“Here’s a guy who did a little bit of everything and did it all well,” vouched Bacon.
Bartlett hypothesized, “I think his legacy should be remembered as he was pulling people up.”
The date for Jordan’s funeral service has not yet been set. He will be honored and buried at the Abilene State Veterans Cemetery, services handled by the Girdner Funeral home.