The Missouri Press Association produced the “Deadline in Disaster” documentary film that had its premier showing in Columbia last week. The film documents how The Joplin Globe and its staff responded to the biggest story in the newspaper’s and city’s history.
It’s a moving experience to view the film on the Joplin tornado. Every journalism student in the country, and working journalists, should view the film, since it also is an educational documentary on how The Globe covered the tragedy.
The Globe staff was up to the challenge even though one staff member was killed and 33 of the 117 employees lost their homes. In total, 161 people lost their lives in the May 2011 disaster. The newspaper building was not damaged. The Globe was able to publish daily after the tornado. The Globe told the story through staff members’ eyes and that’s what the film portrays.
One of the advisers on the film was Scott Charton, former Associated Press reporter who now has his own public relations and consulting firm in Columbia. He said the film would benefit journalism students. They would see beyond the textbook and classroom what it’s like to be a journalist in midst of a story they’re covering, he said.
The film also would be of interest to the general public. It was directed by Beth Pike and Stephen Hudnell of Columbia. Beth grew up in Washington, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Don Pike. He was circulation manager at The Missourian for a number of years. Beth is a graduate of St. Francis Borgia Regional High School.
The Missourian sends belated congratulations to the staff of The Joplin Globe for its coverage of the tornado under extremely difficult conditions.