Weather Award

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Saturday kicked off Florida's Hazardous Weather Awareness Week, designed to get Floridians more prepared for potential weather disasters.

One student in our area is already aware of the importance of being prepared thanks to a familiar face. The student was honored in Tallahassee.

Ryan wells wasn't attending classes at Altha public school Monday morning. He was busy meeting someone he looks up to.

"He tackled Ivan pretty good. It was intense."

Wells is referring to NewsChannel 7's Chief Meteorologist Jason Kelley. Kelley was on hand as Ryan well accepted his award at the Capitol building Monday morning as one of the winners from a state essay contest to promote Hazardous Weather Awareness Week.

Contest entries were asked to answer the question "what impact has someone from Florida had on my life during the 2004 or 2005 hurricane season?"

As Ryan Wells read his essay to the crowd on hand, he made a good case for his inspiration.

Ryan Wells said, "Mankind barely, rarely triumphs over the brute strength of mother nature, but on the night of September 15th and the following morning, Jason Kelly prevailed, not Ivan, September 15, 2004, destroying the opponent, but by informing the spectators of the dangers."

Wells was awarded a weather radio and $750 for his creative writing. The shot to meet his hero was an unplanned reward.

"Ivan claimed the lives of several people and Jason Kelly protected hundreds."

Over 2,000 students in 27 Florida counties entered the state's essay and poster contest. Ryan won for the entire northwest Florida district.