Madalyn O'Neill

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Hometown: Columbus, Wisconsin

High School: Columbus High School

College: UW-Madison

Other Journalism Experience: 2 years in La Crosse at WKBT, internship here 

Started News 3 Now on: March 19th, 2018

What is your favorite part about living in Madison? I love being near my family, and Madison just feels like home.

What is the biggest news story that you’ve covered? Either a big murder trial in La Crosse (Todd Kendhammer), or when Joseph Jakubowski, the man at the center of a nationwide manhunt, was found in a rural area outside La Crosse.

What do you like to do in your spare time? I love running (casually – don’t expect to see me run a marathon) and reading anything I can get my hands on. I’m also a huge fan of escape rooms.

What is your favorite kind of ice cream? Ice cream is one of my favorite foods, so this is hard, but my all-time favorite is probably Cold Stone’s cake batter ice cream with fudge, caramel, brownies and nuts.

What is your favorite place to vacation? Either Puerto Vallarta or honestly, I love taking 2-day trips to the Wisconsin Dells with my boyfriend and friends, especially during the times of the year when it’s not super crowded. I love that it’s just a small city based around having fun.

What was your favorite band when you were in high school? Either Green Day or Fall Out Boy. I can say not much has changed.

What is your favorite sport to play or watch? I’m very uncoordinated, but I enjoy watching football. Brett Favre was one of my heroes growing up.

If you could possess one superhuman power, what would it be? It might not be as handy as being able to become invisible or transport or something, but I’ve always known I’d choose being able to fly.

What are you really bad at that you’d love to be great at? Probably singing. I’d be in a rock band in another life.

What is your most memorable travel experience? I’d say either the first time I went to Puerto Vallarta and I couldn’t believe how beautiful it was, or the first time I landed in Las Vegas on the trip from the airport to our hotel on the strip. It was nighttime, and everything was so lit up and alive.

Who would you most like to interview alive or dead, and why? I would love to interview Rod Serling, host of the original Twilight Zone series. I’m so interested in all of the concepts the show dove into that still hold up 50+ years later.

What is your favorite song of all time? I love Lazy Eye by Silversun Pickups.

What is your favorite movie of all time? My favorite movie is It’s a Wonderful Life. I watch it every year around Christmas. I think the final scene is the best movie scene of all times.

What is your favorite book of all time? That is probably the hardest question for me, but for sentimentality’s sake/simply how many times I’ve read them, I have to go with the Harry Potter series. I’ve gotten really into the Throne of Glass series lately, though.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? As far as life advice, I’d go with follow your gut. My intuition rarely leads me astray.

For specific career advice, a wise coworker from my previous job told me, “Don’t speak faster than you can think.” That helped me immensely during live shots

Where were you when September 11, 2001 occurred? I was in my third grade classroom. I recall it was my teacher’s birthday, but everyone was very somber. I remember not fully understanding its importance until later, when my dad called me to ask if I heard what happened.


Torn Apart: Local efforts to help Afghan refugees are marked by both tears and triumph

It’s not just a single family that is navigating resettlement complexities on top of personal tragedy. The Catholic Multicultural Center estimates about 136 members of the Afghan community have resettled in the Madison area since 2010, and more will soon come.

‘A big weekend in Madison’: UW-Madison’s Homecoming returns on Halloween weekend

‘Two-for-one’: Vaccinators offering flu shot with COVID-19 boosters

‘I just don’t understand why nothing was done’: Decades after reporting sexual abuse by adoptive father and teacher, woman continues push for justice

As judge faces backlash in Rittenhouse trial, defense attorney calls debate over words like ‘victim’ and ‘rioter’ common

With lack of options, UW-Madison hunting club searches for gun storage solution

‘Free Katoine’: Family, advocates call for release of man ‘heavily implied’ in officer shooting

‘I know there’s a lot of confusion’: Health officials break down booster news

Vaccinators get ready for shot spike with upcoming approvals for boosters, children 5+

‘A hub of hope’: Southside church looks to build new center to support community

Mt. Zion Baptist Church sets fundraising goal of $9 million

‘This could’ve been prevented’: Authorities recommend reckless homicide charges for Madison man in crash that killed 3 teens

‘Shut this fake investigation down’: Wisconsin attorney general calls for election probe to end

A tiring trend: How leaders are trying to slow down rising car thefts

‘We ran for Evan’: Middleton Cross Country team crosses finish line together as tribute to late teammate

‘They would want us to keep going’: Three students killed in crash honored during homecoming

‘A good future for my family’: Afghan refugees share worries and hopes from Fort McCoy

‘It was very violent’: Wisconsin couple safe after being part of Amtrak derailment

‘Cars make horrible gun safes’: Firearms stolen from vehicles about triples from 2019 to 2020

Majority of stolen firearms reported taken from vehicles

‘We need to be prepared’: Iowa County firefighters battle flames in propane training

Fire Chief: Liquid propane use on rise

‘It was really heartbreaking’: Madison West students respond to email canceling dance with petition

MMSD: Email sent ‘prematurely,’ district ‘not recommending cancellation’

‘A job seeker market’: Employers offer incentives in competitive hiring landscape

F-16 fighter jets take to sky for night training, with F-35s on horizon

‘Incredibly reckless’: Jefferson County health official, community members plead schools to do more to stop COVID-19 spread

Fort Atkinson passes mask requirement Thursday

Beltline work brings backups alongside promise of brighter, less-congested future

‘We have seen a large uptick’: Improved ventilation sought as added layer of pandemic protection

‘Bring some comfort’: Fabric drive brings supplies, sewing machines to Afghan refugees

Democrats ‘comfortable with extreme vetting process’ for refugees after Fort McCoy tour

‘Not again’: Nurses face burnout as Delta surge fills hospital beds

MMSD School board passes resolution calling for mandatory staff vaccinations

‘Trust is everything’: Mobile vaccine clinic puts down roots in Allied neighborhood

‘Truly life or death’: Madison nonprofit, veteran group help evacuate Afghan ally’s wife, young son

Interpreter, now settled in Madison, grateful for help of military ‘brothers’ and CMC

‘Our shadow pandemic’: Long haul COVID brings questions, calls for research

Health experts concerned about potential outbreaks of diseases like measles with lag in routine childhood vaccinations

State officials recommend school districts track COVID-19 vaccinations, but not all are

‘I love it’: Families, students gear up for new school year with donated supplies from back-to-school drive

Wisconsin lawmakers react as military prepares to relocate Afghan refugees to Fort McCoy

‘A little bit of help so we can help you’: New Glarus Area EMS seeks donations for improvements in the face of funding challenges

Rural EMS faces challenges in funding, staffing

‘Knew this building would be a total loss’: Evacuees allowed back home after large fire destroys warehouse

Following big enrollment jump, virtual charter school expects about half of newcomers to stick around

‘It’s kind of shifted gears’: Local pharmacy transitions from vaccine rush to COVID test spike

Fitchburg Family Pharmacy gives most COVID tests to date Wednesday