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WDBJ anchor: ‘It was very clear something was wrong’

Posted at 1:50 PM, Aug 27, 2015
and last updated 2015-08-28 06:47:27-04

ROANOKE, Va. -- WDBJ Anchor Kimberly McBroom wore a turquoise and maroon ribbon Thursday, in honor of Alison Parker and Adam Ward.

McBroom was anchoring the Wednesday morning newscasts when Alison and Adam were slain on live television, as people watched the  show while drinking coffee.

“I heard it and I saw the camera shot going like this,” McBroom said; which was Adam’s camera turning to briefly capture his killer. The killer had waited until Adam stopped filming the shoreline at Smith Mountain Lake so that the execution could be broadcast on live television.

McBroom said nothing prepared her for, nor did she expect, the events that happened.

“We were trying to text them, ‘Hey what's going on, what was that,’” McBroom recounted. “We didn't hear anything, no response.”

“The longer we didn't hear a response, the more it was very clear that something was very wrong,” she said.

A memorial for Alison Parker, Adam Ward, and all at the WDBJ station in mourning for their colleagues.

A memorial for Alison Parker, Adam Ward, and all at the WDBJ station in mourning for their colleagues.

Thursday morning was a difficult one as the morning news team walked back into the studio to broadcast. The journalists held hands through a tearful moment of silence at 6: 45 a.m., the fated moment the killer took their bright lives.

“I needed that moment,” McBroom said, “I needed to pause for a moment and remember what had happened -- I think our community needed that moment.”

Local police continued to monitor the area outside the station for extra security, but hour by hour a makeshift memorial grows, with balloons, flowers and cards to remember the two and show support for the colleagues in mourning.

WDBJ General Manager Jeff Marks said he's received countless of messages from people reaching out, from across the country.

“It's heartwarming, none of it brings them back so it’s really bittersweet,” he said.

Marks said those on air this morning were choking back tears, but as journalists, the crew at WDBJ said despite the pain, the reports are something that must be done.

“I wanted to make sure that we told her story, his story and we're the ones that have to do that,” McBroom said.