Remembering Virginia TV reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward

The television reporter and cameraman who were killed Wednesday while they were doing a live shot for the morning show were a young team at the beginning of their careers.

The reporter, Alison Parker, was chasing her dream in TV news. The cameraman, Adam Ward, had been with WDBJ for several years, starting off in the production department and moving to videographer. The pair often posted photos on social media of themselves working together on assignments.

Parker, 24, was hired at WDBJ full-time just over a year ago, said Jeffrey Marks, the station's general manager.

She grew up in Martinsville, Va., and attended James Madison University.

Her father released a statement following the tragedy.

    Barbara, Drew, and I are numb, devastated and I find my grief unbearable. Alison was our bright, shining light and it was cruelly extinguished by yet another crazy person with a gun. She excelled at everything she did and was loved by everyone she touched. She loved us dearly, and we talked to her every single day. Not hearing her voice again crushes my soul. Our family can only take solace in the fact that although her life was brief, she was so happy with it. She lived it to the fullest and her spirit will always be with us.

The station's general manager said she was great at her job and "universally loved."

"She took on the morning live reporting job with great excitement and vigor," Marks said. "Nobody could have done it better."

PHOTOS: Reporter, photographer shot and killed during live report

Ward, 27, grew up in Salem and attended Virginia Tech.

"Adam was a capable photographer who would go the extra mile to get the job done," WDBJ journalist Joe Dashiell wrote.

Colleagues and the competition described both as dedicated journalists.

"She was bubbly and outgoing," said Eric Johnson, a photo journalist at WSLS of Roanoke.

Johnson would run into the pair during early morning breaking news stories.

"He was always very professional but down to earth and always had a winning smile," Johnson said.

About 50 people work at WDBJ, and Marks said "it's the kind of place where it's all brothers and sisters."

Both Parker and Ward found love at the TV station. Ward was engaged to a producer at the station, and she was in the control room, watching the live shot, when the shooting unfolded.

Parker was dating an anchor and had just moved in with him. Her boyfriend, Chris Hurst, posted several messages on Twitter and Facebook.

"She was the most radiant woman I ever met," Hurst wrote. "And for some reason she loved me back. She loved her family, her parents and her brother."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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