There was a feeling of emptiness at Camden Yards before the Baltimore Orioles hosted the Los Angeles Angels Friday night. It was accentuated by the press box chair that remained empty once the teams took the field.
It was the spot where everyone knew they’d find John McNamara. The 56-year-old writer regularly covered Orioles home games for the Capital Gazette. It was one of his cherished assignments as part of what he considered a dream job.
Sadly, that dream ended on Thursday. McNamara was one of five Capital Gazette employees killed when a gunman opened fire in their newsroom.
Before Friday’s game, the Orioles honored McNamara and the four other victims — Rob Hiaasen, Gerald Fischman, Wendi Winters and Rebecca Smith — with a moment of silence and a message of remembrance for five lives cut tragically and senselessly short.
— Eduardo A. Encina (@EddieInTheYard) June 29, 2018
Press box memorial
As part of their tribute, the Orioles displayed a touching memorial at the spot where McNamara frequently watched Orioles baseball and practiced his respected writing style. The team placed a bouquet of white lilies and a copy of Friday’s Capital Gazette in the spot where his computer would usually sit.
The Capital Gazette (@CapGazNews) seat in our press box.
We will pause for a pregame moment of silence in honor of the victims as we extend our heartfelt support to the many family members, colleagues, and friends who are grieving this unimaginable loss. pic.twitter.com/uRGgrQ5oEE
— Baltimore Orioles (@Orioles) June 29, 2018
The display is meant to honor each of the five victims.
McNamara was the one most familiar to the baseball and sports community, and certainly to those he’s shared a press box with over the last three decades. His loss has been felt on a personal level by those he worked closely with.
John McNamara is one of the best people I’ve met in journalism. He was a great friend. I’m heartbroken. My thoughts are with his family and the rest of the victims of his horrible tragedy in Annapolis. pic.twitter.com/d5j0b2Re7R
— Marc Carig (@MarcCarig) June 29, 2018
I want the University of Maryland to consider naming the press box after John McNamara. He loved Terps sports, was an alum and died as a journalist. I think it would be a great tribute so others remember him.
— Rick Snider (@Snide_Remarks) June 29, 2018
Baseball and life go on. But like the Orioles, we extend heartfelt condolences to the family members, colleagues and friends of all five victims.
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