Capital Gazette Victims Identified, Mourned: ‘No Finer Human Being’

Five people were killed and others wounded in shooting at newspaper

Last Updated: June 28, 2018 @ 8:44 PM

Police have released the names of the five employees killed in the shooting at the Capital Gazette newspaper: editor Rob Hiaasen, sales assistant Rebecca Smith, and writers Wendi Winters, Gerald Fischman and John McNamara.

“There was no finer human being, there just wasn’t,” Hiaasen’s widow, Maria, said in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “And certainly no finer father, and he was a damn fine journalist too.”

“I just want people to know what an in­cred­ibly gentle, generous and gifted guy my brother was,” Carl Hiaasen told The Washington Post. “He was an unforgettably warm and uplifting presence as a father and brother. But he also had dedicated his whole life to journalism.”

“The Wire” creator David Simon, a veteran of the Baltimore Sun, memorialized him Thursday while criticizing President Trump for calling journalists enemies of the American people.

Simon also remembered his friend McNamara, who he called “a careful, committed and lifelong journalist who first honed his craft as a sports reporter on the University of Maryland Diamondback, where I had the pleasure of working with him.”

“Wendi was my church mentor. She was there for so many big moments of my childhood and helped me at some of my lowest points as a teen,” a friend of Winters said on Twitter. “She was a badass who took shit from no one and would not only stand up for what was right but get in your face about it.”

Smith was a recent Capital Gazette hire, but “proved herself a valuable asset,” the paper wrote Thursday night. “She was a very kind person,” Smith’s boss, Marty Padden told the paper. “She was very likable, and she had a good sense of humor.”

And the Baltimore sun memorialized Fischman as a “clever and quirky voice of a community newspaper.”

The shooting suspect was taken into custody and interrogated Thursday night, Annapolis, Maryland police said in a press briefing. Citing law enforcement sources, NBC, CNN and the Baltimore Sun identified the suspect as 38-year-old Jarrod Ramos, a man who had a longstanding dispute with the paper stemming from its coverage of a criminal case in which Ramos was convicted of harassing a woman who rejected his advances.