Staffers at TV stations in two states were saddened Wednesday to learn that reporter Ken Ward had died.
That's because Ward, 44, who worked at ABC affiliate WSOC in Charlotte, N.C., until last week, was scheduled to start work Monday at WFTS-Ch. 28 in Tampa, as one of the station's multimedia journalism reporters.
"Right now, frankly we're all stunned," said Doug Culver, news director for WFTS. "We can't even begin to think about what happens next."
Ward was hired at the beginning of December, but worked at WSOC until the end of 2011 to fulfill his contract, Culver said. His family may have already rented a home in the area.
A spokeswoman for the North Carolina station said Ward's wife had a mother and brother who live in Tampa. WSOC had no information on the cause of death, saying it had not been determined.