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The CBS affiliate Adam Ward and news anchor Alison Parker were staff members of the WDBJ station in Roanoke, Virginia, and fatally shot at the Moneta Live TV Interview on 26 August 2015. They met Vicki Gardner, the local chamber of trade executive officer when a gunman threatened all three of them. At that scenic age, Parker was 24 years old, and Ward was 27 years old.

Vester Lee Flanagan II, 41, was also identified as Bryce Williams‘ alias, a former WDBJ reporter whose actions had been interrupted in 2013.  Flanagan shot herself with policemen after five hours of man hunting and then died in a hospital after a traffic chase.

Murders / Assassinations

Parker and Ward had a live interview on the forthcoming 50th-anniversary celebrations for Smith Lake, 26 kilometers southeast of Roanoke at Bridgewater Plaza in Moneta. At 6:46 am, the shooting took place. Midway into the section that was seen on the morning news program of WDBJ Mornin Eastern time Parker administered the interview with at least 8 bullets followed by a yell in the footage of the shooting. The camera of Ward dropped to the ground and caught Flanagan’s image carrying a 19 9mm Glock gun briefly.

After this event

Parker and Ward died on stage shortly afterward. But Gardner recovered after treatment at the Memorial Hospital of Carilion Roanoke. Parker died from gun-shaken wounds to her head and abdomen, while Ward died of shoots to her head and her torso, according to the medical examiner’s office. Since curling in a fetal pose to play dead, Gardner was shot in the back. There have been a total of 15 shots.

Staff in the WDBJ newsroom checked Ward’s dropped camera’s footage of this incident and described Flanagan as the potential weapon. The manager general Jeffrey Marks was informed, and the information was passed to the county sheriff. At 8:23 a.m. Flanagan faxed ABC News. And then he phoned, calling a confession, just after 10:00 a.m. The police followed Flanagan’s mobile phone to trace him during the following manhunt.

In the Roanoke–Blacksburg Regional Airport, Flanagan drove out of his Ford Mustang and leased a Chevrolet Sonic on I-81 north, then on I-66 east. The leased Sonic was detected at 11:20 a.m. by an automatic plate reader in a Virginia state trooper truck. The troopers requested support and tried to block traffic but Flanagan quickly. After a search of fewer than two miles, his car went off the side of the road and hit a slum near Markham.  Indoors, he was found with bullet wounds that were self-inflicted during the driving period.  He was brought to Falls Church Inova Fairfax Hospital, where at 1:26 p.m. he was pronounced dead.


          Alison Bailey Parker was an undergraduate from the Patrick Henry Community College and James Madison University, Martinsville, Virginia, on August 19, 1991–August 26, 2014. From December 2012 to May 2014, she interned at the WDBJ and worked as an ABC news reporter for WCTI-affiliate TV’s in New Bern, North Carolina, then as a correspondent to Mornin, she was working in 2014 at the WDBJ. The born in Daleville, Virginia, was Adam Laing Ward (10 May 1988 – 26 August 2015). He grew up in Salem, Virginia, and completed his studies in information and media in 2011 with a degree in Virginia Tech. He has been a videographer and casual sportsman at the station since July 2011.

Personal background

From February 1997 to March 1999, Flanagan served as a general task news reporter for CBS affiliate WTOC-TV in Savannah, Georgia. In Tallahassee, Florida, between March 1999 and March 2000, he was a reporter for NBC affiliate WTWC-TV. He subsequently told Don Shafer, News Editor, that collaborators had attacked his sexual identity. In a Daily Mail interview, former WTWC Sports Writer Dave Leval said that after reporting errors, Flanagan sexually assaulted two female employees at the station and multiple photographers attempted to escape from the job on histories Flanagan was assigned to because of his “diva” behavior.

Flanagan lost his employment in March 2000 because of “unhealthy conduct” and lodged an African-American civil suit against the WTWC on perceived racial discrimination. In January 2001 the charges were concluded in unspecified terms. Sinclair Broadcast Group owner of WTWC ceased news operations of the station in November 2000 owing to low ratings and reduced budgets. In Greenville, North Carolina between 2002 and 2004 Flanagan worked for the CBS affiliate WNCT-TV. He also operated in the Midland, Texas, KMID ABC affiliate.

The motive behind the incident

          Flanagan kept Facebook and Twitter pages suspended when identified as a shooter suspect. On both profiles, he repeated WDBJ’s claims of racial discrimination, naming Parker and Ward in particular. He argued that during his internship at the WDBJ, Parker had reflected on an acquaintance of Flanagan and Ward, after working with him on one occasion, had lodged a lawsuit against WDBJ in a human resources department.

At 11:14 a.m. on the day they were fired, Flanagan posted a screenshot of a 56-second phone camera to his Facebook and Twitter pages until they were suspended.  In the film, he went up to the interview scene, brandished a handgun for about 15 seconds without the realization of Ward, Parker, or Gardner; later, Gardner said that the TV was blinded. As he points at Parker, he mocks ‘bitch’ and lows the pistol, then lifts it again and directly opens fire. Before the attack, Parker shouts and shouts and the light of the camera of Ward falls rapidly before Flanagan takes his camera away and switches it off.


          To celebrate Parker’s graduation from the school in 2009, the community College Patrick Henry and the PHCC Foundation established a bursary Alison Bailey Parker Memorial after the murder. A student who studies in the media design and development program wins an annual certificate. In 2017 the University of James Madison donated the Alison B. Parker studio to the sound and control room at Harison Hall. The Media Arts and Design School of the university has established the Alison B. Parker Memorial Fund. Adam Ward Scholarship Fund was established by the Salem Educational Foundation and the Alumni Association. His father, the Buddy, also worked as a counselor in Salem High School in former times.

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