Holy Crap, you never think an international news event is going to happen right in your own neighborhood. I was on the computer Monday afternoon when I heard a sputtering jet coming ever closer. I ran outside and saw a pilot ejecting from an FA-18 Hornet as the plane was on its way down. His parachute deployed as the smoke started billowing from a neighborhood about a mile away. I ran and grabbed my camera, dropped it on the way out, totally destroying my 16-35mm, and headed for the scene with just a 70-200mm. I get there before firefighters only to witness homes, cars on fire and horrific noxious fumes in the air. I shot for about 10 minutes and all the firefighters showed-up. After about another 1/2 hour shooting, I decided to head back and transmit only to find my car sandwiched in between 2 fire trucks. I was then forced to walk home a mile, fun fun!!. What sucks is I have 4 friends all within 3-4 houses from the crash site. Waaaaaay to close for comfort. It changes your perspective as a journalist when you and your neighbors are part of the news. I found myself getting annoyed when some TV guys overheard me telling this story to a buddy and all the sudden I was swarmed with cameras in my face. “How did you feel being a parent of 3 kids knowing there might be a dead child” “How the hell do you think I feel. Oh well, I guess it’s payback for all the times I’ve stuck my lens in a subject’s face.
Anyway, in retrospect, keep your batteries charged and a card in camera because you never know when this kind of thing might happen.