From war correspondent to lawyer

C. Justin Brown recounts his life as a war correspondent in the Maryland Daily Record. Last year, after being nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for his Balkans reporting, he ditched the flak jacket for a lawyer’s wig,

Looking outside, he saw a NATO Tomahawk missile slam into the upper floors of the nearby UÅ¡ce Tower, a political party headquarters. A note from the hotel management appeared under his door the next morning.
“Dear Sir, due to bombing on your side of the building, we suggest you move to the west end of the hotel,” Brown recounted with a chuckle. When the Serbia-Kosovo war officially ended weeks later, the steel nerves that had allowed Brown to cover the conflict for the previous year-and-a-half were finally fraying. “At that point, I had, had enough,” he said. “Living under airstrikes for 78 days, I was a bit frazzled.” That was eight years ago…
…One time, he said, Newsweek called and demanded he find and write about a “fresh massacre” to keep pace with other outlets’ reporting. On a tip from a spy, Brown drove Newsweek’s armored truck around the Drenica region of Central Kosovo with the door open yelling to pedestrians he passed, “Ku erst masaker?” — Albanian for “Where is the massacre?” — until townspeople directed him to the burial site and dug up recently interred bodies. He learned various tricks to get stories and stay safe, including dying his hair black to appear native and playing appropriate music in his car — Serb or Albanian, depending on the neighborhood he was traveling through…
…While he misses elements of his former life, Brown said the switch was necessary. “I had lost my passion for journalism,” Brown said. “I wasn’t as hungry as I had once been and I couldn’t continue like that. It was not possible. There was no doubt about it.” link