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February 23, 2023

Dylan Lyons, the TV journalist in Florida who was killed on the job, was raised in Philly

The 24-year-old was covering a homicide investigation for Orlando's Spectrum News 13 on Wednesday, when the alleged killer returned to the scene and shot him

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Dylan Lyons Journalist Shooting Dylan Lyons Spectrum News 13/Facebook

Dylan Lyons, 24, a TV reporter for Spectrum News 13 in Florida, was shot and killed while reporting on the scene of a homicide investigation in Pine Hills, Orange County. Lyons was a Philadelphia native.

Dylan Lyons, a Philadelphia-native TV reporter for Spectrum News 13 in Florida, was fatally shot while reporting at the scene of a homicide investigation on Wednesday, police said. 

Lyons, 24, was reporting on a fatal shooting that had occurred earlier Wednesday morning in Pine Hills, a town less than 10 miles outside of Orlando, when the suspected shooter returned and opened fire. He and Spectrum News 13 photojournalist Jesse Walden were shot at around 4:05 p.m., the station reported. 

Walden remains critically injured. 

Lyons was born and raised in Philadelphia, according to a biography on the station's website. He later moved to Florida, where he attended high school at the Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts in West Palm Beach and the University of Central Florida, where he graduated with a degree in journalism and political science, according to his LinkedIn. He spent three years as a reporter and anchor for WCJB TV20, an ABC affiliate station in Gainesville. 

Lyons joined the Spectrum News 13 team as a multimedia journalist in July, where he was "honored to have the unique privilege of being a voice for the voiceless and making sure all communities and stories are treated fairly and equally," his biography read. 

"When he was out of the news station, he was still talking about how much he wanted to succeed at his job, talking about how much he loved Orlando," Josh Miller, Lyons' friend and colleague, told Spectrum News 13. "Very close with his mom, too. I remember on different social media posts that he would put up, how grateful and thankful he was for his mother helping him get to this point, whether it was graduating from UCF, getting into the business." 

Miller described Lyons as an ambitious, motivated journalist whose love for his community, family and loved ones made it possible for him to succeed and climb through the ranks of Florida's television news. He was also a fan of the Philadelphia Eagles, according to his Twitter account. 

"The love of my life was murdered," Casey Lynn, Lyons' fiancé, tweeted just after midnight on Thursday. "I will never be the same person ever again. Please help my family and I during this time." 

GoFundMe campaign was set up by Lyons' older sister, Rachel, to raise money for his funeral and memorial service, which will be held on March 10. The campaign has raised more than $25,000 since Wednesday night. 

Celeste Springer, a fellow reporter for Spectrum News 13, gave an update on the shooting during Wednesday night's broadcast. The reporter asked viewers to pray for Walden's full recovery, as well as for all victims of gun violence across the United States. 

The person suspected of shooting Lyons and the other, Keith Melvin Moses, 19, was arrested at the scene Wednesday and has been charged with the murder for the death of Nathacha Augustin.  Additional charges related to the other shootings are expected, Orange County Sheriff John Mina said. Police believe that Moses was an "acquaintance" of Augustin's, and that he was involved in the shootings of Lyons and Walden, as well as the death of 9-year-old T'yonna Major and injury of her mother.

The Pine Hills and Orlando communities responded to the news with an outpouring of support on Wednesday. Shortly after Lyons was identified as a victim, Spectrum News released a statement in response to the shooting, sending condolences to the reporter's loved ones and colleagues. 

"We are deeply saddened by the loss of our colleague and the other lives senselessly taken today," Spectrum News' parent company, Charter Communications, tweeted. "Our thoughts are with our employee's family, friends and co-workers during this very difficult time. We remain hopeful that our other colleague who was injured makes a full recovery. This is a terrible tragedy for the Orlando community." 

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre also extended her sympathy, tweeting, "Our hearts go out to the family of the journalist killed today and the crew member injured in Orange County, Florida, as well as the whole Spectrum News team."