I was born in Toledo Ohio, on Nov. 30th 1959. Considering the 30th is the last day of hurricane season and the 1st male named storm for tropical systems was “Bob” maybe I was destined to be a storm chaser.
My Mom and Dad are truly amazing, raising 5 boys, all born within 7 years of each other. "We spoke to people that he went to college with, and we tell them that Bob's a meteorologist on TV, and they just think ‘wow, that is just unbelievable’," says Bob’s mom Patty Harrigan.
Being the middle child I had to strive to get attention. Could be the reason I’m on TV. I played lots of sports, from pee wee football and high school ball. It was in our genes.
My father was all-state, and my mom is the best tennis player in the world. At least I think so.
My love for golf came early, 14 years old, while caddying at one of the most prestigious courses in the U.S., Inverness Country Club in Toledo, where Suncoast resident Paul Azinger won the 1993 PGA Championship.
Graduating in 1985 from the University of Kansas, with a degree in Meteorology and with very little broadcasting experience, I got an offer from Channel 40, now ABC 7. "And every time we see you on television were always amazed," says dad Norm Harrigan.
"They found this guy in Kansas by the name of Bob Harrigan. He knew his weather, but he was a little green a little new to this TV thing. But since then he's done pretty well for himself and the community. He has become the voice of reason and trust when it comes to Suncoast weather," says ABC 7 anchor Scott Dennis.
The thrill of my career was flying into a 115 mph Hurricane Bertha in 1996, followed up by Hurricane Ivan with winds whipping up to 145 mph in 2004.
My second job is fixing things, having fixed every appliance in our house, from the refrigerator, microwave, to TV’s. I’ve fixed all 4 of our HDTV’s which would have gone to the landfill but are still going strong today.
But to relax I love to fish, and doing it with my daughter is truly special time.
Working 27 years at ABC 7, I’ve talked to almost every organization, neighborhood association and school, from kindergarten to college, enlightening children and adults to the dangers of storms.
We live in a very philanthropic community, and I’ve been a part of raising millions of dollars for worthwhile causes.
It is said’ "When you open your heart to giving, angels fly to your door." While volunteering at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation walk on Siesta Key in 1999 I met my future wife, who was walking for her daughter Brittney, who has Type 1 diabetes.
And by far my best day of my life was June 7th 2006, when my wife gave birth to our beautiful daughter, Emma Grace. 50 years have come and gone, and I’m hoping the next 50 are just as good.