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"Funny, vivacious" reporter, 24, among victims in Colo. shooting

(CBS News) AURORA, Colo. - It is still early in the investigation of the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. Most of those who died have yet to be publicly identified. But for one of the victims, a promising life was only beginning at 24.

She was known as Jessica Redfield, an aspiring broadcaster.

Sportswriter Adrian Dater first met her in the press box at a hockey game.

"She was funny, vivacious. She was very, very funny, very intelligent," he said. "You knew something was there, you knew there was a sparkle in her that she was going to be something someday.

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"She had a lot of dreams, she was gonna do fine," he continued. "That's what hurts so much. We never got to see that."

Just a month ago, she narrowly escaped death in another mass shooting at shopping mall in Toronto, Canada.

After the shock, she wrote this in her blog: "I was shown how fragile life was. I saw the terror on bystanders' faces. I saw the victims of a senseless crime. I truly understand how blessed I am for each second I am given."

She was born Jessica Ghawi from Texas, and her brother Jordan wants people to remember that name.

"I don't want that gunman's name spoken," Jordan Ghawi said. "I want that to be the name remembered is Jessica Ghawi or another victim's name and remember what they stood for and what their lives meant."

She wrote a blog about hockey in Denver and interned at a radio station. She got a lot of attention on YouTube when an interview on the ice went wrong. The young reporter slipped and fell -- but never stopped smiling.

Jessica was always sending text messages. And on Twitter Thursday night, she joked about dragging friends to a midnight show and lamented about waiting 20 minutes more for the show to start. It was the last 20 minutes of her life.

Her boyfriend remembered her on Twitter like this: "140 characters could never do you justice nor could all the words in this world. Never wanted to fall asleep because it meant missing time with you."

  • John Blackstone

    From his base in San Francisco, CBS News correspondent John Blackstone covers breaking stories throughout the West. That often means he is on the scene of wildfires, earthquakes, floods, hurricanes and rumbling volcanoes. He also reports on the high-tech industry in Silicon Valley and on social and economic trends that frequently begin in the West.