Tragedy in an Instant, Photographed for a Lifetime
“I will continue to photograph, film, and document major points in Saleh’s life for as long as he continues to welcome me into his world. Our lives have woven together, and Saleh’s indomitable spirit continues to inspire me every day.”—Deanne Fitzmaurice
On November 11, 2003, when I was a staff photographer for the San Francisco Chronicle, I was assigned a quick story on a young Iraqi boy who had been flown to Oakland Children’s Hospital, now called UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland, for emergency treatment.
A little over a month earlier, in a small village outside Nasiriyah in southeastern Iraq, nine-year-old Saleh was walking home from school with his big brother Dia when he picked up what he thought was