Community members reminisce on Jimmy Buffett’s time spent in ENC

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) – When it comes to meeting a celebrity like Jimmy Buffett, Liane Harsh says she was determined to not be starstruck as the legend walked the streets of Washington.

“On the day we were here it was exciting. I’m not gonna lie I mean he was just one of those singers that he just got such a great impact on everybody and so when I heard he was over there I tried to be cool you know not go running over there to meet him,” said Harsh, owner of Inner Banks Outfitters.

Buffett was in Eastern Carolina to check in on the progress of a boat being built by Pacific Seacraft in Washington back in 2016.

“I mean, my encounter with him was just so casual. I didn’t feel like I was meeting a celebrity I just, he was just a really nice guy. I mean, he was petting my dog, talking to her, showing me pictures of pictures of his paddleboard,” said Harsh.

On September 1st, she was in pure disbelief to learn about his passing.

“I don’t know. It was a bit unbelievable because he’s just one of those icons that you think always gonna be around until I never thought about it,” said Harsh.

Buffett’s website said he died following a four-year-long battle with Merkel Cell skin cancer, an aggressive type of skin cancer.

“A significant number of patients will have spread this cancer to their lymph nodes when they are diagnosed, and a good number will develop what we call metastasis or cancer in other areas of the body from the spread of cancer, so yes, it is an aggressive malignancy more aggressive than melanoma,” said Dr. Nasreen Vohra the Brody School Chief Surgical Oncologist.

As the music world comes to grips with the loss it’s made some become a little more in touch with their Parrot Head side once again.

Dr Nasreen Vohra said Merkel’s skin cancer is known to be related to sun exposure so as you remember Jimmy Buffett with a salt-rimmed glass and ocean breeze, also remember your sunscreen.

According to the Jimmy Buffet website, he continued to perform during treatment, playing his last show which happened to be a surprise appearance in Rhode Island in early July.