Arriving to a crime scene as the ambulance and fire trucks are pulling up is nothing new for me. As a reporter, it happened all the time. But I’m not a reporter anymore.
Wednesday night, a dinner out with friends turned into the scene of a tragedy. As we were leaving the restaurant, the chaos was unfolding. People running and screaming someone had been shot. People describing the gunshots they’d just heard. Sirens blaring as the trucks turned down the side street and came to a stop. Right in front of my friends’ car.
As a retired reporter, I did what I always did. Assessed the scene. It’s hard to explain if you have never been a news reporter, but your movements are almost robotic. It’s like someone flips the emotion switch off. You have a job to do. And strangely, that happened for me again. It wasn’t until the next day this tragedy hit me.
Loved ones were running; frantic.
“He was shot in the head. He was working.”
Two men made their way down to where the ambulance parked. When they returned to the intersection where we stood like statues watching, the older of the two men broke down, falling onto the sidewalk. He got on the phone.
“Call her. Tell her he was shot. He’s not going to make it. It doesn’t matter what happened, she needs to get to the hospital now.”
* * *
I woke up the next morning and immediately checked news websites and my twitter feed. The shooting got very real as I saw the face of the man who died. So young. He has children. It’s an all-too-familiar story for those of us in the media [or those of us who used to be], but I am not at the scene digging for more information today. I’m just a witness who is forced to carry on…and wonder.
Family: Blind Rabbit employee shot, killed while taking trash out
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A man was shot and killed near the Blind Rabbit restaurant Wednesday night in Riverside.