Photos seem almost second nature to us, there’s not a place we can go today without being bombarded by imagery. However, there are very few that can not only take a technically awesome photograph, but they can do it risking their very life to bring the truth out in a story. As most of my followers know, I have a HUGE heart for photojournalism. It’s my ultimate passion, and one day I hope it will be my ultimate destiny, if life be so inclined to see me reach my goal.
We all know my top favorites, such as Steve McCurry, Nick Ut, etc. However, some that I have yet to mention that have always interested me, and I have followed their work a great deal is those of Chris Hondros, Tim Hetherington and Christopher Michael Brown.
Spring of 2011 these three men along with many other photojournalist and journalist alike convoyed their way through Libya. Tim, Chris and Christopher were a tight nit group, they constantly traveled together, collaborated together, and documented together, Tim often was the leader of this close group.
Two years ago tomorrow, they were out convoying and stopped at Misurata to photograph the scene there. During which they got spilt up due to several explosions and enemy gunfire. Two of the three men in this powerhouse group lost their lives that day on April 20, 2011; Chris Hondros and Tim Hetherington.
I remember sitting in front of the TV late one night nursing my young son, he was 7 months old and knocked out in a milk coma. I couldn’t help but to weep. These men risked everything they had including their lives to bring the truth photographically to the public. We all know that photojournalism is sometimes a dangerous gig, but no one wakes up one morning and says, “Oh, well I shouldn’t go and photograph today, I shouldn’t do my job and photographically report these stories, because it wont matter, I’m going to die today.” No one does that. These men were fearful, they were cautious, they went with people that knew the areas, that had Intel, they went in a large enough group to be considered safe. Libya for the most part always left journalist alone to do their jobs. For whatever reason, someone felt that they were getting to close to whatever the truth was. This was the first time in Libya’s history that foreign journalist had been attacked and killed.
The costs are great and sometimes you pay the ultimate price in this gig, but I have to say I am very thankful and grateful for the men and women, like myself, who would risk it all just to get the truth told. Chris Hondros and Tim Hetherington, your legacies live on through your life’s work! You two are amazing, and your work touched my heart! I can’t say how many times I searched your pages for your uploads, or how many times I looked to see if it was one of your images on TIME, LIFE, the local Newspaper or the New York Times! You are among the very few that swallow your fear and get the job done phenomenally! So thank you for risking it all, and paying the worst price imaginable! You are truly Hero’s of our profession!
Join me in a moment of silence tomorrow at noon in memory of these two men that lost their lives, Chris Hondros, and Tim Herthington. Thank you so much.