Free-Lance ABC News Cameraman Dies en Route to Story

ABC News free-lance cameraman Ralph Binder died after an accident in Omaha, Neb.

ABC News president David Westin e-mailed the news to staffers Thursday afternoon, saying that the ABC News veteran died in a traffic accident on the way from Denver to Omaha to cover the mall shootings there.

According to Westin, police said Binder was with soundman Dan Johnson near Grand Island, Neb., when they swerved to avoid a car that had lost control. Binder was killed and Johnson treated at a local hospital and later released.

Binder joined the network in 1974 and worked in its Washington, D.C., bureau before moving to Denver. He was Charlie Gibson's cameraman during the California wildfires last month, Westin pointed out.

Binder is survived by his wife, Joy, who is a free-lance producer for ABC, and two sons.

"As terribly sad as this is," Westin said, "it does remind us of the extraordinary work and commitment of so many of our colleagues in the field every day."

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.