Washington Post photojournalist Michel du Cille died Thursday. The Post obituary, “Michel du Cille, Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist, dies at 58,” is available here.
Martin Baron, executive editor of The Washington Post, shared this note with The Washington Post newsroom:
I am deeply saddened to report that Michel du Cille died Thursday afternoon while in Liberia documenting the tragedy of Ebola.
Michel collapsed during a strenuous hike on the way back from a village where he and Justin Jouvenal were reporting. He remained unconscious, and was taken to a nearby clinic, where he had difficulty breathing. He was then transported to Phebe hospital, two hours away, where he was declared dead by doctors.
Michel had returned to Liberia on Tuesday after a four-week break that included showing his photographs at the Addis Foto Fest in Ethiopia.
We are all heartbroken. We have lost a beloved colleague and one of the world’s most accomplished photographers. Our thoughts and prayers are with Michel’s wife and fellow Post photographer Nikki Kahn, and his two children.
Michel died at 58 doing the work he loved. He was completely devoted to the story of Ebola, and he was determined to stay on the story despite its risks. That is the sort of courage and passion he displayed throughout his career.
He earned three Pulitzers, but his reward was in his mission as a journalist. He was an eloquent witness to history, and he told the story of humanity – moments of joy and moments of struggle against overwhelming tragedy. We will deeply miss this man of soaring talent and limitless passion.
Below are the official statements from Frederick J. Ryan, Jr. and Martin Baron:
“All of us here at The Post are devastated by the news of Michel’s death. He was a cherished colleague and one of the world’s most revered photojournalists. Michel was completely devoted to the story of Ebola, and he was determined to stay on the story despite huge personal risks. That is the sort of courage and passion he displayed throughout his career. The loss to our newsroom and to our profession is incalculable.” -Martin Baron, executive editor of The Washington Post
“Only a day before his death, we exhibited Michel’s stunning Ebola photographs before an all-employee meeting at The Post. Once again, Michel had been witness to history and to human struggle and, as always, his photographs constituted storytelling of uncommon power. To learn now that we have lost this beloved colleague and exceptional journalist is absolutely heartbreaking.” -Frederick J. Ryan Jr., publisher of The Washington Post