Fifty years ago on March 9, 1972, I celebrated my 25th birthday in Saigon. It was an occasion I never thought I’d see. I arrived in Vietnam a year earlier, and during the ensuing months saw combat in Cambodia, the India-Pakistan War, and of course, Vietnam. There were so many close calls that by rights I shouldn’t have made it. But I did.
Every year after that special day has been a gift, one that I deeply appreciate. When I hit 50 I doubled up, and on my 75th, I scored a triple! You will never ever hear me complaining about getting old, I’m just happy to be here.
Along those lines I would like to recognize my colleagues who are covering the Russian invasion of Ukraine. I can’t even begin to express how much I admire every one of them, and how critically important their work is to the world. I gladly admit that I didn’t consider going to Ukraine, but I’m gratified and at the same time anxious for those who did, and for those photographers from there.
I send love and admiration to them all including Carol Guzy, Lynsey Addario, Marcus Yam, Erin Trieb, Emilio Morenatti, John Stanmeyer, Peter Turnley, Wolfgang Schwan, Aris Messinis, Chris McGrath, Mstyslav Chernov, Jérôme Sessini and so many others. They are the eyes of freedom.
(Photo by Robert Wiener under fire near An Loc, South Vietnam on one of the many days I didn't think I would make it out alive. You can see clearly see that in my expression!).