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Foundation sets plan for US memorial for fallen journalists

media A permanent memorial for journalists who lose their lives on the job is being sought amid the closure of the Newseum building, seen here, which has a wall with the names of slain news professionals GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP/File

A new foundation is launching plans for a permanent memorial in Washington for journalists who lost their lives in the line of duty.

The initiative from media organizations and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to be announced Wednesday comes a year after a shooting spree at the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland, in which five people died.

The National Press Club Journalism Institute will host the Fallen Journalists Memorial Foundation, which is seeking to raise funds and enact legislation to build the memorial on federal land in the US capital.

Initial funding will be provided by the Annenberg Foundation and the Ferro Foundation.

Legislation to authorize the memorial is being sponsored by Representatives Grace Napolitano and Kevin Hern and Senators Ben Cardin and Rob Portman, although the measure would require all funding to come from private sources.

David Dreier, chairman of the Tribune Publishing Company, said: "The memorial will pay tribute to heroes who have sacrificed their lives in the name of a free press. We look forward to working with policymakers and fellow journalists to see this project come to fruition."

Dreier will serve as chairman of the foundation's board and its president will be Barbara Cochran, director of the Washington program of the University of Missouri School of Journalism.

A memorial for journalists killed on the job has been hosted for several years at the Newseum, a museum on journalism.

The organization which operates the Newseum said this year it would be selling the building and seeking temporary headquarters next year.

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