Let's have a moment of silence for the Capital Gazette - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Let’s have a moment of silence for the Capital Gazette

A gunman blasted his way into the Capital Gazette newsroom in Annapolis Thursday with a shotgun Thursday afternoon, killing five people, authorities said. Journalists dived under their desks and pleaded for help on social media. One reporter described the scene as a “war zone.” A photographer said he jumped over a dead colleague and fled for his life.

REACTION: Catherine Rentz compiled comments and tweets from everyone from Gov. Larry Hogan to Trump press secretary Sarah Huckabee-Sanders to Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the murders at the Capital Gazette building.


ROB HIAASEN: Rob Hiaasen once wrote a description of his ideal job: “I would like to be paid for the occasional amusing remark or for simply showing up promptly to work and bringing in cookies from time to time,” he wrote a colleague. “Alas, there’s no market for those outstanding qualities.”

  • Michael Ruane of the Post writes that Rob Hiaasen, wrote about snow snorkeling. He wrote about his bat house: “Bats can eat as many as 1,200 insects an hour. .?.?. And I want to meet the person who tallied some bat’s hourly chow.” He wrote about a conversation with his dog, Earle.

GERALD FISCHMAN: The first time Gerald Fischman applied for a job at The Capital, the editor passed him over. Fischman’s personality was so quiet and withdrawn that it hid the brilliant mind, wry wit and “wicked pen” that his colleagues would treasure. Erin Cox of the Sun writes that for more than 25 years, Fischman was the conscience and voice of the Annapolis news organization, writing scathing, insightful and always exacting editorials about the community.

  • Joe Heim of the Post writes that Gerald Fischman was known in the newsroom for his shy demeanor, smart writing, wry wit and the cardigan with holes in the elbows that he always seemed to be wearing. He was also known for being in the office at all hours.

JOHN McNAMARA: John McNamara was toiling as a news copy editor at the Capital Gazette when he left to pursue his dream: sports reporting, Andrea McDaniel writes in the Sun. He honed his skills at the Prince George’s Journal, a competitor to the Annapolis news organization. Within a few years, the Capital Gazette hired him back. He would work there for nearly 24 years. He was offered a job at the now-shuttered Baltimore Examiner newspaper for more money, a larger circulation, more national television exposure, but turned it down because he said he didn’t want to risk working for a start-up. But the major reason he said was that the hours to do the job would take time away from his family. His family, he said was more important to him than the job. A lesson for every journalist to learn.

WENDI WINTERS: Wendi Winters spent a dozen years writing her way into the Capital Gazette newsroom. After a career in fashion and public relations in New York City, the 65-year-old mother of four moved to Maryland 20 years ago and began stringing for the Annapolis news organization. She soon built a reputation as a prolific freelance reporter and well-known community resource.

REBECCA SMITH: Rebecca Smith was a recent hire at the Capital Gazette but had already proved herself a valuable asset. Smith, 34, a sales assistant, worked in the news organization’s office in Annapolis. Her boss, Capital Gazette advertising director Marty Padden, said she made sure the sales office ran smoothly. “She was a very thoughtful person,” Padden said. “She was kind and considerate, and willing to help when needed. She seemed to really enjoy to be working in the media business.”

The Baltimore Post-Examiner contributed to this report.

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