Virginia-based photographer Jason Hirschfeld recently lost his life while taking photos from the top of a parking garage. The 48-year-old man fell from 80 feet (24m) height, and lost his life in a freak accident that is yet to be examined.
The tragedy happened on Saturday at the downtown Norfolk parking garage. The police got a report shortly after midnight, and paramedics could only pronounce Hirschfeld dead at the scene. According to a preliminary police investigation, Hirschfeld was on the eighth level of the garage when he fell. There is still no word on the cause and manner of death, but the police say that no foul play is suspected.
Hirschfeld was to Portsmouth and returned to the area in the 2000’s. He had been working as a freelancer for The Virginian-Pilot and The Associated Press, as well as The York Times, The Washington Post, Getty Images, USA Today, Sports Illustrated & ESPN, and many others. The Virginian-Pilot notes that Hirschfeld was not on assignment for The Pilot when the accident happened. However, he did send three photos to the outlet only four hours before he was found. In the photos, you can see a sunset above the downtown Norfolk and the view of Portsmouth from across the Elizabeth River. “All three appeared as if they’d been taken from a high vantage point, like the parking garage with a mural of whales painted on one side from which he fell,” this source notes.
A star is visible as the sun sets over the Elizabeth River this evening in Norfolk. (📸: Jason Hirschfeld/For The Virginian-Pilot)
According to his colleagues, Hirschfeld was loved and respected in his team, and he was very passionate about his work. Pilot sports editor Jami Frankenberry described him as an extremely positive person. “He had a loud laugh and he definitely had a big personality,” Frankenberry told the Pilot. “He just exuded positivity and enthusiasm.”
Hirschfeld was survived by his wife of 22 years, Michelle, his daughter Caylee, and son Ethan.