2 WDBJ Employees Killed After Gunman Opens Fire During Live Shot

By Kevin Eck 

WDBJ reporter Alison Parker and photographer Adam Ward were shot and killed after a gunman opened fire during a live shot airing on the Roanoke, Va., CBS affiliate’s morning newscast.

The station says police are looking for the suspect who started shooting while the two were on-air around 6:45 a.m.



The gunman is believed to have fired six or seven times, WDBJ General Manager Jeff Marks said. The station does not believe that the interview subject was injured, Marks said.

Video circulated on social media showed a WDBJ reporter scream as what appeared to be gunshots were fired.

Parker is the morning reporter for the Roanoke station and a native of Virginia, having spent most of her life outside Martinsville. She started with WDBJ as an intern, her biography on the station’s website says.

WDBJ general manager Jeff Marks told viewers, “It is my very very sad duty to report that we have determined, through the help of police and our own employees, that Alison and Adam died this morning shortly after 6:45 when the shots rang out.” Marks told viewers they did not know why the two were shot or who the shooter was. “Our hearts are broken and our sympathies go to the entire staff here.” Marks added the two “were just out doing their job today.”

>UPDATE: The Roanoke Times reports Vicki Gardner, the woman who was being interviewed by Parker, was shot in the back and is in surgery.

Parker was dating WDBJ anchor Chris Hurst who tweeted that he is “comforted by everyone at the station and is heartbroken for Ward’s fiancee.

He wrote about his relationship with Parker on his Facebook page.

We didn’t share this publicly, but Alison Parker and I were very much in love. We just moved in together. I am numb. We were together almost nine months. It was the best nine months of our lives. We wanted to get married. We just celebrated her 24th birthday. She was the most radiant woman I ever met. And for some reason she loved me back. She loved her family, her parents and her brother. I am comforted by everyone at WDBJ7. We are a family. She worked with Adam every day. They were a team. I am heartbroken for his fiancee. She is our morning show producer. This is unconscionable. But I WILL share her story because it is one full of life, dreams, love and amazing journalism. She just finished working on an incredible special on child abuse and it was fantastic. We will get through this and there will be justice. Your thoughts and prayers mean the world to me.