The Arizona Republic fired a longtime photographer two weeks ago after someone claimed he helped his wife obtain a great seat at last month's Trump rally in Phoenix.
Sylvia Layman Kadlubowski, a local archaeologist, related the tale of husband David Kadlubowski's firing in a public Facebook post, writing that he had been accused unfairly by the anti-Trump newspaper.
The Gannett-owned newspaper received national attention a year ago today after its editorial board endorsed Democrat Hillary Clinton for president, asserting that Trump was "not qualified" and not conservative.
In her September 12 post, Sylvia Kadlubowski republished a photo of herself in the crowd behind the president and addressed the anonymous person who "who creeped on my FB page" and complained to the Republic.
David Kadlubowski, who had worked for the newspaper full time for 13 years, had been fired earlier that day, according to his wife.
"Sorry to disappoint you, whoever you are, but my husband had nothing to do with me getting up there," she wrote "This may come as a shocker, but through a real conversation with someone, I got myself on stage, not my husband ... ME."
David Kadlubowski declined comment. Sylvia Kadlubowski told New Times that she didn't want to comment for this article, but said her Facebook post was a true account of what happened.
Following the call from the Phoenix New Times on Wednesday, the public post was removed from Sylvia Kadlubowski's page.
She can be seen, however, in the prominent seat behind Trump in numerous photos of the event, and in a video (below) that the president posted on his Twitter account.
David Kadlubowski had been assigned to cover the August 22 Trump rally at the Phoenix Convention Center. He and his wife — a Trump supporter — were standing near the media platform when he introduced her to a White House staffer he had met earlier in the day, she wrote.
The unnamed woman staffer had wanted to meet her "because I was an archaeologist and [she] had never met one."
"So David left for the restroom, and the WH person and I talked for a bit," she wrote. "They asked me where I was going to watch the speech from and then asked if I wanted to get closer. Of course I did!"
The meeting came after she had requested a ticket to the rally online and had stood that day "outside in the sun for over four hours waiting to get inside."
Numerous Facebook friends typed in their support of the couple in the post's comment section.
Sylvia's sister, Laura D. Patrick, wrote that Sylvia "called me after waiting in line for hours," and implied her brother-in-law would still have a job if the same thing happened at a music concert.
"My sister and her family have been dealt a serious blow here," Patrick wrote. "Why? Because she is an archaeologist and someone thought she was interesting (which she is) and offered her a seat. He did NOTHING wrong and lost his job. Just deplorable."
MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! pic.twitter.com/RzePiucV3h— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 23, 2017
"Are you freaking kidding me?" Facebook user Tina Bakalis wrote. "There is no way you would have used any connection ... not a chance in heck. I am so sorry, you and your family don't deserve this."
"On the surface it sounds like a politically-motivated railroading," wrote friend Gary Baker.
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"I believe you hit the nail on the head," Sylvia replied.
Sylvia Kadlubowski also griped that the Republic didn't check out the facts very closely before making its harsh decision to terminate her husband: "I do not care if someone has a different political philosophy than me. Apparently that sentiment is not one shared with whoever did this. Worst thing is that after 13 years with the paper, they chose to believe someone's assumption rather than David Kadlubowski They did not bother speaking to me or the people who were with me ... not what I would call a very thorough investigation."
Nicole Carroll, top editor at the Arizona Republic, didn't immediately respond to a request for comment about the photographer's firing.
Like many other newspaper companies, Gannett has had financial difficulties in the last few years, and the Arizona Republic has had periodic layoffs. Last week, the paper fired four newsroom employees, including one — Tom Blodgett — who had worked for the paper for more than 30 years. New Times Editor Stuart Warner's wife was also laid off.