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Let’s Move Quad Cities: A Non-Weather Related Report From Meteorologist James Zahara

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Dr. Shawn Wynn - and the Sports Medicine Team at ORA Orthopedics - is used to working with athletes... not necessarily meteorologists.

But in early 2016, after Storm Track 8 Chief Meteorologist James Zahara felt a "pop" while playing basketball with his friends, that changed.

"I realized it was more than just a sprain when I could not put weight on it," explained James. "I also realized I was not able to push off the ball of my foot."

After an MRI, James found out he had torn his Achilles tendon... and that was just the beginning of the bad news.

"The news that I had to deliver that it was a tear - a full tear - and that he required an operation to get the best outcome possible was a little tough to tell him, because I knew he was active and I knew what he did and I knew the next discussion was - well, after the surgery, what can and can I not do," explained Dr. Wynn. "That's the toughest talk I sometimes have with people is - this is going to require you to not work on this for a period of time. It's going to require you to rely on other people to get you from Point A to Point B."

James had to take off two weeks of work for the surgery, but Dr. Wynn said he recovered quicker than expected. Once back at work, James spent the next two months using a scooter, then a boot, and finally a brace to get around the station and forecast the weather before he was entirely back on his feet.

"From beginning to end, I feel like I was rather fortunate through the whole process and lucky to have the people I had to work with me on this situation," said James.

"Getting them back to moving again is our goal," added Dr. Wynn.

He explained it will take six months to a year for James to get back to 100% again. Luckily for James, he said he plans on doing what he loves - forecasting the weather for the QCA at WQAD News 8 - for much longer than that.

"This was something I wanted to do ever since I was a kid," he explained. "I actually had a question from somebody who asked - 'Mr. Zahara, how long do you plan on doing this?' and I told them - when it’s not fun anymore and I hope to do that for a really long time... without any more injuries!"

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