MEDIA
12/03/2013 09:52 am ET | Updated Dec 03, 2013

Sam Champion Says Goodbye To 'Good Morning America,' ABC News

Sam Champion said his goodbyes and thanks to his fellow ABC News staffers after it was announced on Monday that he is leaving "Good Morning America" for the Weather Channel.

After 25 years at ABC News, Champion described the network as his home, "filled with my family and friends."

"I hope to have an opportunity in the next few days to hug and thank each and every one of you, for making such a large part of my life so extraordinary."

Champion discussed his new venture on "GMA" Tuesday morning, admitting that he never thought he would "get a chance to do something like this" but once again called ABC News "my home and my heart"

"Our sadness is only superseded by our happiness for you, you deserve this and so much more Sam," co-anchor Robin Roberts said in response.

But it's not over just yet. The "GMA" co-hosts also said that Wednesday's show would be full of "extra special" Champion highlights from over the years.

Read Champion's entire memo to his staffers below:

(h/t: FTV Live)

This is a note I never imagined I’d be writing. For 25 years, ABC has been my home, filled with my family and my friends. Every day when I walk these halls, virtually every face is known and familiar to me. It’s a rich news culture that I grew up in, and I feel privileged to have been taught by the very best.

This journey began with my days at WABC-TV, starting off doing weekend weather. Proudly I rode the juggernaut that was “Eyewitness News”, New York’s fabled #1 news station. I was lucky enough to spend most of my career doing weather on the 5:00, 6:00 and 11:00 news there, meanwhile filling in on “Good Morning America” since 1989.

So when ABC News asked me to take the job at GMA in 2006, I already felt like I was part of the family. But I could never have known the depth of that word “family”, until spending the last seven-plus years with you all. I’ve been privileged to feel the power and full resources of ABC News as I travelled the globe covering the weather. GMA has offered me a unique and unparalleled blend of assignments, from the devastating tornadoes of Joplin, to the heartbreaking destruction of Super Storm Sandy… incredible adventures, from the Arctic Circle to the Brazilian rain forest and epic live events from Katy Perry to Britney Spears. It’s a job anyone would be lucky to have.

To the crews in the field, Ops, producers , writers and editors, bookers, overnight staff, studio crew, Seniors, and, of course, Team Weather, I want to say thank you to each and every one of you. It’s your hard work that makes a powerhouse network news division like ABC News, and a #1 show like GMA, possible.

Thank you Ben Sherwood, for your unwavering support of all things weather and being the leader who understands that weather is news. I appreciate your wisdom and counsel, not only during my time at ABC but also during this transitional period. Thanks to James Goldston and Tom Cibrowski for putting new life into GMA, and guiding what was already a number one show into truly becoming number one in the ratings. To my fellow anchors at GMA: Robin, George, Josh and Lara, thank you for making television electric and invigorating. I’ve never had more fun in TV than in the last few years with you.

I hope to have an opportunity in the next few days to hug and thank each and every one of you, for making such a large part of my life so extraordinary.

It’s my opinion that never has the understanding of weather been more important to our lives than right now. I’m excited for the opportunity to join the Weather Channel for this next adventure.

I look forward to hearing from all of you. Starting next week, you can reach me at (we took out the email to help stop Sam from spam).

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