JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

George Winterling, chief meteorologist at WJXT for more than four decades, remains in the hospital, but his family said his condition is improving every day.

?So many people have asked us about George in the past few days. I?m thrilled to tell you although he?s still in the hospital he?s stable and progressing," WJXT Vice President and General Manager Bob Ellis said. "He?s been watching our Channel 4 newscasts and, as you might expect, keeping tabs on the weather. George and his family wanted to be sure I let everyone in Jacksonville know how much they appreciate the outpouring of support and well wishes they?ve received in the last week. It has meant the world to them.?

Winterling stepped back from daily forecasting duties two years ago, but has remained active as Channel 4's hurricane expert. He joined the station's coverage of Hurricane Irene last month and maintains his Eye on the Storm blog during the tropical season.

On Wednesday, he posted an update on Hurricane Katia and tropical storms Maria and Nate.

Among his numerous career highlights, Winterling was the only local weathercaster to accurately predict Hurricane Dora coming ashore near Jacksonville in 1964.

In the early days, he designed and copyrighted the space-view weather maps to show viewers weather systems across the United States.

In 1978, Winterling was the first meteorologist to combine temperature with humidity to address how hot Florida's steamy summers feel -- something he called the humiture.

One year later, the National Weather Service began tracking the same phenomena, which it called the heat index.