On-Air Shooting Survivor Makes 1st Public Comments - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

On-Air Shooting Survivor Makes 1st Public Comments

Posted: Updated:

ROANOKE, Va. (AP) - The woman who survived an on-air shooting that killed two TV journalists in Virginia says the gunman never said a word.
    
In her first public comments since last month's shooting, Smith Mountain Lake Chamber of Commerce executive director Vicki Gardner spoke with Fox News' Greta Van Susteren in an interview broadcast Tuesday night.
    
Gardner said that while being interviewed on live TV Aug. 26, she was paying attention to the camera but noticed something down the walkway.
    
"I just saw movement and then gunfire. Lots and lots of gunfire," Gardner said. "From that point it was very chaotic."
    
Vester Flanagan walked up and opened fire, killing WDBJ-TV cameraman Adam Ward and reporter Alison Parker. Both died of gunshot wounds to the head and body.
    
Gardner thought she was next.
    
"I realized it was quiet and everybody was down. And I didn't know where (Flanagan) was," Gardner said. "I felt as though the next shot - I knew - the next shot he was just going to shoot me in the head because that was what he was doing."
    
Gardner said after the initial shots, she instinctively dropped to the ground and got into the fetal position, pretending to be dead.
    
As he moved about, Flanagan was "very silent" and didn't speak, Gardner said.
    
The gunman returned and shot her in the back.
    
"Had I continued to stand, I would not be here talking to you," she said.
    
Flanagan fatally shot himself five hours later after a police chase.
    
Gardner said she thought a bullet had gone through her spine and she would be paralyzed. But that didn't happen. Doctors removed a kidney from Gardner and part of her colon. She was released from a Roanoke hospital Sept. 7.
    
"I'm happy to be here," she said.
    
Gardner said although she has watched video of the shootings, it's too soon to return to the scene at the Smith Mountain Lake Visitor Center.
    
"Why save me and take them?" she said of Parker and Ward. "But obviously there's a purpose - and by golly I will fulfill it."
    
On Monday night, Parker's boyfriend, Chris Hurst, returned to his WDBJ anchor job for the first time since the shootings, wearing a striped tie that Parker gave to him on Valentine's Day.
    
"I know the answer to what we all must do - it is to profess love, not hate," Hurst said.

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Crews Working to Restore Power Following Stevensville Tornado

    Crews Working to Restore Power Following Stevensville Tornado

    Tuesday, July 25 2017 4:43 AM EDT2017-07-25 08:43:20 GMT
    Tuesday, July 25 2017 4:43 AM EDT2017-07-25 08:43:20 GMT
    Delmarva Power crews worked overnight to restore power following Monday morning's EF2 tornado that tore through part of Queen Anne's County.More
    Delmarva Power crews worked overnight to restore power following Monday morning's EF2 tornado that tore through part of Queen Anne's County.More
  • Local Volunteer Organization Making a Change

    Local Volunteer Organization Making a Change

    07/24/2017 20:04:00 -04:002017-07-25 00:04:00 GMT
    Monday, July 24 2017 8:34 PM EDT2017-07-25 00:34:33 GMT
    Pile of clothes being assorted before deliveryPile of clothes being assorted before delivery
    "Clothing Our Kids," a local volunteer run organization that had its start in a home, has grown, and is making a significant impact on Sussex County. The charity collects and donates clothing to 33 elementary schools for children K-5.More
    "Clothing Our Kids," a local volunteer run organization that had its start in a home, has grown, and is making a significant impact on Sussex County. The charity collects and donates clothing to 33 elementary schools for children K-5.More
  • U.S. Ag Secretary Visits Delaware State Fair

    U.S. Ag Secretary Visits Delaware State Fair

    Monday, July 24 2017 8:27 PM EDT2017-07-25 00:27:20 GMT
    Monday, July 24 2017 8:27 PM EDT2017-07-25 00:27:20 GMT
    HARRINGTON, Del. -- U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue visited the Delaware State Fair on Monday, visiting a number of young growers and farmers from the region.Perdue, a former governor of Georgia with no relation to the chicken company prevalent oMore
    HARRINGTON, Del. -- U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue visited the Delaware State Fair on Monday, visiting a number of young growers and farmers from the region.Perdue, a former governor of Georgia with no relation to the chicken company prevalent oMore
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Salisbury Man Sentenced to 25 Years After Third Felony Drug Conviction

    Salisbury Man Sentenced to 25 Years After Third Felony Drug Conviction

    Thursday, July 23 2015 12:15 PM EDT2015-07-23 16:15:04 GMT
    Thursday, July 23 2015 12:48 PM EDT2015-07-23 16:48:44 GMT
    A Salisbury man convicted last month of cocaine possession and “maintaining a common nuisance” has been sentenced to 25 years without parole, the Wicomico County State's Attorney's Office announced Thursday.More
    A Salisbury man convicted last month of cocaine possession and “maintaining a common nuisance” has been sentenced to 25 years without parole, the Wicomico County State's Attorney's Office announced Thursday.More
  • Updated: Queen Anne's County Tornado Confirmed

    Damage, Power Outages Reported After Maryland Severe Weather

    07/24/2017 07:59:00 -04:002017-07-24 11:59:00 GMT
    Monday, July 24 2017 3:29 PM EDT2017-07-24 19:29:58 GMT
    A large tree fell on this house in Stevensville, Md. during an overnight severe storm that passed through the area. (Photo:  Frank Tedesco/ Atlantic City Electric)A large tree fell on this house in Stevensville, Md. during an overnight severe storm that passed through the area. (Photo: Frank Tedesco/ Atlantic City Electric)
    A National Weather Service team has confirmed an EF2 tornado touched down in Queen Anne's County on Maryland's Eastern Shore. The tornado downed trees, damaged homes, and knocked out power out for thousands.More
    A National Weather Service team has confirmed an EF2 tornado touched down in Queen Anne's County on Maryland's Eastern Shore. The overnight weather event downed trees, damaged homes, and knocked out power out for thousands.More
  • Police Searching for Wanted Man in Laurel

    Police Searching for Wanted Man in Laurel

    Monday, July 24 2017 3:32 PM EDT2017-07-24 19:32:32 GMT
    Monday, July 24 2017 3:32 PM EDT2017-07-24 19:32:32 GMT
    Michael K. WashingtonMichael K. Washington
    Delaware State Police are asking for the public's help in locating a local man for assault and other charges.More
    Delaware State Police are asking for the public's help in locating a local man for assault and other charges.More
  • Most Popular VideosMost Popular VideosMore>>

  • Tornado Destroys Homes in Stevensville

    Tornado Destroys Homes in Stevensville

    Several homes in the Bay City area of Stevensville were left extremely damaged after a tornado.

    More

    Several homes in the Bay City area of Stevensville were left extremely damaged after a tornado.

    More
  • Damage, Power Outages Reported in Queen Anne's Co. After Severe Weather

    Damage, Power Outages Reported in Queen Anne's Co. After Severe Weather

    A National Weather Service team is headed to Maryland's Eastern Shore to determine whether a tornado touched down there.

    The weather service says the team is headed to Queen Anne's County on Monday to assess damage from the early morning storm that downed trees, collapsed buildings and knocked out power to thousands overnight in the Stevensville area of Kent Island. County officials say one person was injured but those injuries were not life-threatening.

    More

    A National Weather Service team is headed to Maryland's Eastern Shore to determine whether a tornado touched down there.

    The weather service says the team is headed to Queen Anne's County on Monday to assess damage from the early morning storm that downed trees, collapsed buildings and knocked out power to thousands overnight in the Stevensville area of Kent Island. County officials say one person was injured but those injuries were not life-threatening.

    More
  • Three More Suspects Arrested in Bank of Delmarva Holdup

    Three More Suspects Arrested in Bank of Delmarva Holdup

    Detectives with the Salisbury Police Department have arrested three more suspects in connection with the Dec. 9 armed robbery of the Bank of Delmarva branch on Eastern Shore Drive. 

    More

    Detectives with the Salisbury Police Department have arrested three more suspects in connection with the Dec. 9 armed robbery of the Bank of Delmarva branch on Eastern Shore Drive. 

    More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices