Happy birthday, Vanessa Echols! 9 times she reminded us she really, really hates snakes

CENTRAL FLORIDA — August 3, 1992 started a new era for WFTV: A new reporter named Vanessa Echols walked in the door for her first day.

"It was exciting: New station, new city, new people," said the anchor and breast cancer survivor. "I was ready for a challenge."

Since that day, Echols worked her way up from reporter, to morning anchor, to afternoon and evening anchor: Delivering the news to countless people in Central Florida over the years.

Her battle with breast cancer inspired women to be checked for the disease. Her new podcast has opened up new conversations about race. And she's shown her love for the Alabama Crimson Tide many times.

But one thing also stands out among her colleagues and viewers:

Vanessa. HATES. Snakes.

"People come up to me and ask me if I had a traumatic experience with snakes or something. I haven't. I just don't like them!," Echols said. "And I'm convinced our producers put snake stories in the shows just to torture me."

Here are nine times Vanessa has reminded us that she wants nothing to do with snakes:

1. You've been warned: It's so important, it's in her Twitter bio: 




2. When the snakes come to her:

3. When Ty Russell reported on a local snake breeding program:

See Vanessa's hilarious reaction at the end of Ty's story:

4. When snake stories slither their way into the rundown for the day:

5. When "friends" get too close to the enemy.

6. When colleagues of 26 years have questionable loyalty:

7. We promise we don't hate you.

8. Maybe it's all just a ruse to get us to watch?

9. ...We take back #8. The fear is real:

Happy birthday, Vanessa!

Click here to follow WFTV's Vanessa Echols on Twitter