More than five months after a mass shooting left five dead inside the Capital Gazette’s office in Annapolis, Maryland, one staffer said safety remains a constant worry, even though the newsroom’s location is now unknown to the public.
In a Friday interview on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” photojournalist Joshua McKerrow said employees are “never going back to the old newsroom.”
“We’re in a temporary location in Annapolis, a secret location, if you can believe that,” he added.
Even so, McKerrow acknowledged that “security is a daily concern for the newsroom.”
The June 28 shooting killed the Capital’s Gerald Fischman, Rob Hiaasen, John McNamara, Rebecca Smith, and Wendi Winters, all of whom were remembered when Time Magazine honored the outlet’s staff with its 2018 Person of the Year title, along with other journalists who’ve been targeted around the world for their work.
McKerrow called the recognition “a great and terrible honor.”
“We’d give every bit of it back – every bit of attention, every – everything back just to have them, just to be able to come in again and argue about our assignments and bicker and share cookies at Christmas,” he said. “And if we could have Rebecca and Wendi and Gerald and Rob and John back, we’d give it all back in a second.”
The Capital’s staffers were slain when a gunman entered the building and opened fire, possibly looking for revenge in a long-standing feud the alleged culprit had with the paper, reports suggest.
Still, McKerrow told NPR “we couldn’t be silenced ... we could not be intimidated by rhetoric or violence,” noting that no employees have left the paper.
“Everyone who survived is still an employee of the Capital Gazette and still working their hardest to serve the community.”