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Capital Gazette staff: 'Keep reading, we've only just begun'

Capital Gazette staff: 'Keep reading, we've only just begun'
© Capital Gazette

Staff at the Capital Gazette newspaper Annapolis, Md., wrote a letter on Sunday thanking those who offered support to them in the aftermath of the deadly shooting at the newsroom this week.

"We will never forget Rob Hiaasen, Gerald Fischman, Wendi Winters, John McNamara or Rebecca Smith, our five co-workers who were gunned down in a senseless attack," the staff wrote.

"But we also will always remember the bells of St. Anne’s ringing as members of our staff — past and present — walked down Main Street surrounded by thousands who turned out to support us in a march to City Dock." 

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On Thursday, a gunman opened fire in the paper's newsroom, killing five people and injuring others. Police have identified the suspect as 38-year-old Jarrod Ramos.

Ramos had a long-running dispute with the paper, suing the Capital Gazette in 2012 for defamation over a column about a criminal harassment charge against him. The case was thrown out by a judge.

The letter Sunday goes on to describe the cards, letters, emails and flowers the staff  received in the days after the mass shooting. The staff also notes that 800 people subscribed to the paper's digital edition on Friday. 

But the staff also says that it will never forget the shooting being celebrated. 

"Here’s what else we won’t forget: Death threats and emails from people we don’t know celebrating our loss, or the people who called for one of our reporters to get fired because she got angry and cursed on national television after witnessing her friends getting shot," the staff added.

The letter also included a thinly veiled jab at President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump renews attacks against Tester over VA nominee on eve of Montana rally Trump submits 2017 federal income tax returns Corker: Trump administration 'clamped down' on Saudi intel, canceled briefing MORE, who often refers to journalists as "fake news" and "the enemy of the people." 

"We won’t forget being called an enemy of the people," the Capital Gazette wrote. 

The letter adds that the staff will never be the same after five of its employees were killed. But it concludes by saying some day the newspaper hopes "to be as good" as it once was. 

"Until then, keep reading," it writes. "We’ve only just begun."

--Updated 5:33 p.m.