Rebecca Smith, Wendi Winters, Josh McNamara, Gerald Fischman, and Rob Hiaasen. Beloved for what made them special and known for their bylines that connected them to the community.
But today, WMAR-2 News's had the honor of meeting the people they touched in the community that they loved.
Joe McGovern has been an avid reader of the Capital Gazette for years and was devastated to hear the heartbreaking news, especially knowing a familiar face such as Wendi Winters.
“It affects me it effects literally my neighborhood. This river is overflowing crabs are this and fish is that. Stuff that affects me every day.”
As a journalist, you build connections with police. Just an hour before the shooting Amy Miguez with the Annapolis Police Department was texting with a reporter inside the building who later tweeted about the experience.
They were joking going back and forth about jurisdictional lines and who he should be reaching out to. A daily conversation for most reporters on a crime beat.
“The next text I got from him like I said less than an hour later was that there was a shooting in his office. The first thing that popped into my mind was he was joking because his office is just outside the city boundaries as well. So I said call county. When he said he was serious I called 911 so that I could make sure they were aware of the situation,” said Amy Migues, Annapolis Police Department.
Bethany Swain a University of Maryland journalist knows the struggle.
“Local journalists their not well paid. They work crazy hours, weekends, early mornings and late nights.”
As a teacher and a mother, she wants changes to stop these types of reports from happening.
“As a journalist that journalists were targets. That’s just so frustrating in this climate with so much negative energy towards people that are working really hard,” said Swain.
The vigil for all the Capital Gazette victims is open to the public and will go until 7 pm.