What do you say when no words will do?

I was awakened by my cell phone at 12:30 p.m. from a nice Sunday nap. On the other end, a man I didn’t know from a place I had never been was telling me horrible news.

Students dead, possibly from USC.

My mind raced almost as fast as my body as I ran out of my door and called every news staffer I know.

In an hour, our newsroom became ground zero for a story we could never know the implications of. Managing Editor Michael Baumann and staff writers Katie Jones and Sean Gruber worked diligently, taking frantic orders and calling anyone we knew.

Then our phones started ringing. CNN. ABC. American Morning. AP. Good Morning America.

The calls wouldn’t stop coming. And neither would the questions.

As the rest of our staff filed in the shock of the event finally settled in. Staff members hugged each other for support and we held a small prayer circle in my office. More than one of us, including myself, shed tears.

Please know that we don’t mean to pry. We are all mourning. We are trying to tell their stories. The stories of friends, roommates, girlfriends lost in the prime of our lives.  Our job isn’t to speculate or hurt families.

Our job is to tell stories to the world.

Jackie Alexander

Editor in Chief 


One Response to “What do you say when no words will do?”

  1. Catherine Says:

    We are so very sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and the families during this tragic time. My high school senior will attend USC soon and we will remember this day over and over again.

    A Tearful old Gamecock

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