Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Moore's Arlington grave shot wins top prize

Getty's award-winning photographer, John Moore, has won another prize, this time for best magazine image, awarded by the U of Missouri Pictures of the Year International competition.

In his own words, Moore, a former wire photographer who also won World Press kudos for his image of Benazir Bhutto's assassination in the street of Rawalpindi, tells the story behind his poignant picture of an army ranger's fiancee in mourning last Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery.

Mary said that they had planned to get married after Jimmy’s four years of service were up next year. “We loved each other so much,” she said. “We thought we had all of the time in the world.”

Later on, I passed by and she was lying in the grass sobbing, speaking softly to the stone, this time her face close to the cold marble, as if whispering into Jimmy’s ear.

Some people feel the photo I took at the moment was too intimate, too personal. Like many who have seen the picture, I felt overwhelmed by her grief, and moved by the love she felt for her fallen sweetheart.

After so much time covering these wars, I have some difficult memories and have seen some of the worst a person can see - so much hatred and rage, so much despair and sadness. All that destruction, so much killing. And now, one beautiful and terribly sad spring afternoon amongst the rows and rows of marble stones - a young woman’s lost love.

I felt I owed the Arlington National Cemetery a little time - and I think I still do. Maybe we all do.
...from John Moore's blog on Getty Images website

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