People are wondering about TV news “families” in light of the horrific WDJB-TV murders, broadcast live.
I’ve worked in several fantastic places, but nothing compares to my first job as a TV news reporter and producer at KIRO-TV, Seattle’s CBS affiliate. Even now, years since I left the station, we are “family:” mourning our colleagues’ deaths; encouraging one another through brutal diseases; celebrating our own or our children’s weddings, babies, and grand-babies.
Only in TV news has there been this strong, lasting connection – but why? Unlike other places I’ve worked, we actually had to talk face-to-face (what a rare concept these days), and from such communication under unforgiving news deadlines our friendships grew, respect for one another developed, and our trust as reporter/photographer/producer teams deepened.
Even as one of our own KIRO-TV reporters was murdered, we together wrestled with how to report the abundant evil and refreshing good we saw daily in our unpredictable jobs. We knew that what we did mattered. As journalists we cared deeply about our work, and we cared deeply about one another. For all this we returned to our TV station day after day, year after year, decade after decade. And now, even long after many of us have left TV news, in our steel-forged friendships we still stay in touch – in good times, and as we do today, in sad…