ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WDVM) — On the 1-year anniversary of the Capital Gazette shooting, officials opened a memorial garden dedicated to the journalists and employees killed.
Just one year ago today, the community was torn by the tragic Capital Gazette shooting that killed five people and injured many others. Now, the victims’ co-workers reflect. “It is hard. It’s a linear path. It kind of takes time to recover and figure out how it affects you, even a year later,” said Capital Gazette Journalist, Danielle Ohl.
To honor the victims, officials set up a memorial garden with pink roses dedicated to those who were affected. Senator Chris Van Hollen, (D) Maryland, gave words of encouragement to journalists around the world. “We want to make sure that we remember the journalists like those we’re memorializing here from the Capital Gazette, but journalists around the country and around the world,” said Van Hollen.
The memorial brought up the issue of gun violence and how this could have been prevented. Journalists were remembered for their passion to put their lives on the line to tell the truth. “It’s not enough to simply say a prayer. We have to pass legislation that meaningfully addresses gun violence,” Van Hollen stated. Many Capital Gazette employees say they will use the garden just as Rob Hiaseen used it when he was alive – to collect his thoughts while writing his stories. “That’s what he loved the most; is just to have the privilege to tell people’s stories,” Ohl said.
Senator Van Hollen and Senator Cardin are working on a bill to establish a fallen journalist memorial on the National Mall.
Governor Larry Hogan proclaimed June 28 “Freedom of the Press Day” in honor of Capital Gazette journalists Gerald Fischman, Rob Hiaasen, John McNamara, Rebecca Smith and Wendi Winters, who all lost their lives on that day last year.