This compelling memoir shares with the reader a unique perspective seen through the camera lens. The title of the book refers not only to being competitive in the field but to a mindset necessary for job survival: act now, react later.
For 29 years (1968 to 1997), Hank Schoepp covered the news for KPIX, the CBS affiliate in San Francisco. There were events he documented in the camera and witnessed firsthand which commanded regional, national and worldwide attention. Among these: getting tear-gassed during student protest and rioting at U.C. Berkeley; Patricia Hearst’s kidnapping from start to finish; searching for a vanishing school bus, its driver and 26 children in Chowchilla, California; traveling to Guyana after a mass suicide of over 900 people in Jonestown; rushing to the murder scene of a San Francisco mayor and supervisor; accounting for the devastation of the Bay Area’s Loma Prieta Earthquake, and narrowly escaping flames of the Oakland Hills Firestorm.
Many books have been written by and about broadcast journalists with interesting things to say. And yet few have spoken on behalf of those who perform on the other side of the camera lens. Finally, that voice is heard loud and clear with SHOOT FIRST: Code of the News Cameraman.