Kholby Martin was born and raised in Galesburg, IL where he continues to live to this day. At a very young age, he developed a love for the outdoors and weather & knew it would stick with him the rest of his life. Growing up, his dad would take him in the country to storm spot and watch the storms role in from the west. One of the first real encounters he had with the devastation of tornadoes came back in April of 2004 when they crossed the damage path of the Utica, IL F3 tornado. He wanted to know how the atmosphere came together to produce such violent storms and tornadoes and decided to pursue a degree in meteorology.
In 2010, he followed his dream by attending Western Illinois University where he would begin studying meteorology and learn the basics to storm chasing. 2011 was the first year for chasing out of state and saw many notable tornadoes including the EF4 Lambert Airport tornado in St. Louis, MO & documenting the tornado outbreak across eastern Nebraska on June 20th. For the next few years, he would continue to chase across the Plain states while finally obtaining a Bachelor Degree in Atmospheric Science from Western Illinois University in the spring of 2013.
Since then, he continues to travel thousands of miles each year in pursuit of severe storms and tornadoes while running a successful mowing & plowing business back home. He has documented close to 100 tornadoes over the last decade and has seen tornadoes as large as a mile wide. Some of his top chases include documenting several tornadoes only 15 minutes from home back in July of 2015 including one that would hit Cameron, IL. Another top chase was driving all night long to southwestern Kansas back on May 18th, 2013 where he documented an EF4 tornado that came close to the town of Rozel.
When he is not storm chasing, he loves to tournament bass fish, race outlaw snowmobiles on ice & spend his time in the woods hunting. He also loves spending time with family and enjoys being outdoors in the summer months. He plans to continue to storm chase in the future and is excited to be a part of the Local 4 and Fox 18 weather team for the Quad Cities.
Jesse Risley is a storm chaser based out of West Central Illinois, currently calling Colchester home. Jesse has had a lifelong fascination with severe weather, and began chasing storms in the late 1990s. He took his first trip out of state to the Plains in 2006, and has avidly chased and pursued severe weather as a hobbyist since that time, focusing primarily on the videography of severe weather. Jesse is in his fifteenth year as a high school geography and social sciences instructor at Macomb Senior High School in Macomb, IL.