Percy Saltzman

Section 16, Lot 1808
York Cemetery

Percy Saltzman, born in Winnipeg on March 15, 1915, was a meteorologist and television personality. He is best remembered for being the first weatherman in English-speaking Canadian television history. A pioneer in weather forecasting, Saltzman was the first Canadian to present the weather in satellite and radar images and to give road and forest fire reports. In addition, he hosted numerous public affairs programs on CBC and, along with Lloyd Robertson, hosted ten days of coverage of the first moon landing in 1969, also on CBC. Saltzman moved to Montreal and studied medicine at McGill University School of Medicine until 1935 when he met and married his first wife, Rose Kogan (1911–1988), in 1935. He dropped out of medical school around this time and took a series of odd jobs such as working in a clothing store, an envelope opener in a puzzle contest and as a waiter before entering the printing business. He then moved with his wife to Toronto in 1937 where he worked as a Linotype operator at Eveready Printing, the Communist Party of Canada’s print shop, for several years. In 1943, he became a meteorology officer for the weather service of the federal government and was attached to the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan for the remainder of World War II. He would retain his position with the Dominion Weather Service for 25 years. It was essentially an extension of this function for him to be given the opportunity to bring his expertise first to radio beginning in 1947 and later to television as the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Percy married his second wife, Grace Ford in 1990. Percy Saltzman died on January 15, 2007 at the age of 92.

 Story Archives »