SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (FOX 2) - For 8 years, you welcomed Jessica Starr into your living rooms, smart phones, and social media feeds. Jessica provided so much light to you but also to us, in the FOX 2 newsroom.
Wednesday night we were informed of the heartbreaking news that our friend and colleague, meteorologist Jessica Starr took her life. All of us here at FOX 2 are in deep shock and cannot believe that such a wonderful, bright and intelligent individual will no longer be with us. Her family and friends will be in our thoughts and prayers in the coming days as we all deal with our grief.
Jessica Starr's story is one of a hometown kid who did well and came back home to start her family.
She was born in Southfield, raised in Commerce Township and went to Walled Lake Central High School.
There, she wore number 33 on the high school basketball team in 1999. Coach Robert Schopf holds her up as a proud reminder that reaching for the stars and winning is a story that started here.
"She's been a hometown hero for us for a long time. Her picture with my basketball team has been on my wall for 18 years. I have pointed out to students that's the channel 2 weather person; look how she's made it. Look how well she's doing," Schopf said.
After high school, Jessica went to Michigan State University and later went on to get her meteorology degree from Mississippi State University.
From there, TV jobs took her to Lansing then to Baltimore where she excelled. Then she got the chance to come back home as she landed on the FOX 2 Weather Authority team.
"Jessica made it. She was living her dream. On TV, (she became) a well-known figure in the community. A kid who really did well and we were all very proud of her," Schopf said.
For Coach Schopf, the success was no surprise.
"I'm sad she's gone, I was proud she was part of our program and years, teams, and kids have been hearing about her and that's not going to stop. She's still a success story from Walled Lake Central and I'm not going to stop telling that story," Schopf said.
The 35-year-old's story was too short and begs for a different ending. But today, we stop and grieve for our friend, coworker and family member.
If you or a loved one is feeling distressed, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The crisis center provides free and confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, or text 741-741.