GREENVILLE, SC – Bad weather on the border between North Carolina and South Carolina killed a TV station and the accompanying photographer, a South Carolina TV station reported Monday night.

Anchor and reporter Mike McCormick and photographer Aaron Smeltzer, who worked for WYFF-TV, Greenville, South Carolina, were traveling a little before 2:30 pm ET on US 176 near Tryon, North Carolina, as a tree on the Vehicle of their station fell, reported WYFF TV. The area is about 40 kilometers northwest of the TV station.

"I had an interview with Mr. McCormick about 10 minutes before the call," said Tryon Fire Chief Geoffrey Tennant. "And we talked a bit about how he wanted us to stay safe and I wanted him to stay safe."

The remains of Subtropical Storm Alberto are expected to bring more rain and landslides this week. He told her to be careful, too.

► May 28: Alberto meets land; 3 States Staple for Storm Pressure
► May 28: Why 1-in-1000-Year Rainfall Ravaged a City in Maryland – Again
► May 27: Ellicott City Flood Brings Emergency Rescue, Condition in an emergency

"Ten minutes later we get the call, and they were," Tennant said at a press conference, his voice cracking.

McCormick worked for the NBC subsidiary since 2007, and Smelter had been working in news in the region for more than a decade, WYFF said.

Aaron Smeltzer of WYFF-TV, Greenville, SC, was a photojournalist in a weather assignment when a tree fell on the vehicle of his station May 28, 2018 , near Tryon, NC (Photo: Courtesy of WYFF-TV, Greenville, SC)

"We all mourn at WYFF 4," News Director Bruce Barkley said in a press release, "Thank you for your Consolation as we grieve We ask you to keep Mike and Aaron's family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. "

McCormick, born in Florida, began working for WYFF as a reporter in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and became later to the weekend anchor for the station at 18 o'clock. and 11 o'clock newscasts, according to the press release. He worked as a reporter and fill-in presenter for KHOG-TV, Fayetteville, Ark. Nearly three years earlier, and three years earlier as an author for WSVN-TV, Miami, after his LinkedIn

Smeltzer was from Virginia, but lived and worked in Greenville for more than 10 years. He started working for WYFF later this year, according to the publication.

Previously, he had worked at WSPA-TV in Spartanburg, according to a story on the station's website.

"Mike and Aaron were excellent journalists dedicated to the subject of news in this market," said John Humphries, the station's president and general manager. "They were beloved members of our newsroom, and we'll miss them very much.

" Today is a difficult day, and there will be many more, "said Humphries.

► May 27 : Alberto dampens Memorial Day plans along the Gulf Coast ► May 25: Subtropical storm forms in the Caribbean, heads to the Gulf Coast

US 176 was in the area around the Accident closed and the North Carolina State Highway Patrol headed the investigation, according to the Police County Emergency Management Office.

A woman died in a mudslide on May 19 near the wreckage and Polk County officials volunteered to leave people in vulnerable areas, before the weather worsened.

► May 22: Yes, a sinkhole has opened on the White House lawn
► May 19: What to do? if mother nature yours Destroyed Vacation

Neither Tennant nor Masts Trooper Murico Stephens of the North Carolina Highway Patrol directly blamed the 2-inch rains that fell on Monday from the edges of Alberto's death. The boss of the fire said the roots of the three foot diameter tree had been loosened on the ground because it had been raining for a week.

The TV engine was still running and the gearbox was in motion when the crews found it. The men died immediately, said Tennant, who described the deaths as a "freak of nature."

Contribution: The Associated Press. Follow Catherine Rogers and Gabe Cavallaro on Twitter: @CatGRog and @gabe_cavallaro


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