Willard Scott speaks out about battle with alcohol abuse

By The Associated Press

(6/19/03 - NEW YORK) — Willard Scott is talking about his battles with alcohol abuse in hopes of helping other people get sober. The longtime weatherman on NBC's "Today" show said he attended his first Alcoholics Anonymous meeting two months after his wife, Mary, died of cancer in October 2002. 

"I didn't fall down to the gutter but I had my problems," Scott, 69, said in an interview for C-SPAN's "Booknotes,©" where he was discussing his book "The Older the Fiddle, the Better the Tune©." The interview aired at 8 p.m. EDT July 13. 

"I think I drank pretty good. And Mary used to always keep me in line," he said. "I drank three or four drinks every night. I mean I was up to about 12 ounces of scotch seven nights a week. Loved it, loved it, loved it. And then after she died, there was nobody to keep me straight." 

Scott, who's based in Washington, says he enjoys going to AA meetings in other cities. "You show up. It's all between you and God. You don't owe these brothers and sisters anything," he said. "I don't think I've ever had more peace and more confidence and just plain love in my life than I have received from this, Alcoholics Anonymous. It's just fantastic."

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press
©. All Rights Reserved.) Source: The Associated Press©, June 19, 2003

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