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Tim Hetherington, RIP


Tim Hetherington after being presented with a Quilt of Valor by the Quilts of Valor Foundation

I was saddened to hear the news from Kanani Fong that Tim Hetherington, the gifted documentarian and journalist who made the critically acclaimed film RESTREPO was killed today in MisrataLibya. Preliminary details are sketchy but early reports had Tim and another reporter suffering shrapnel injuries from an RPG during an attack by Gaddafi forces on Libyan rebels:

Leila Fadel, a Washington Post reporter who was at the hospital, reported that Hetherington was rushed from the battle by ambulance along with rebel fighters. He was taken to a triage tent next to the hospital, she said, and appeared pale and was bleeding heavily. He was pronounced dead some 15 minutes after his arrival, according to her account in The Washington Post.

Story: ‘Restrepo’ presents agonizing war closeup

“Tim was in Libya to continue his ongoing multimedia project to highlight humanitarian issues during time of war and conflict,” Hetherington’s family said in a statement. “He will be forever missed.”

Hetherington was best known as co-director of the documentary film “Restrepo” with Sebastian Junger, author of “The Perfect Storm.” The film tells the story of the 2nd Platoon of Battle Company in the 173rd Airborne Combat Team on its deployment in Afghanistan in 2007 and 2008. It was nominated for an Academy Award for best documentary. The title refers to the platoon outpost, named after a popular soldier, Juan Restrepo, who was killed early in the fighting.

I did not know Tim personally, though I attended an early screening of RESTREPO where the audience included soldiers who had been at Restrepo and their family members. The documentary was powerful and touched the lives of many people and was a testament to the physical bravery of Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger who stood alongside American soldiers in the firefights of the Korengal Valley. That was Ernie Pyle journalism at it’s best.

Sincere condolences to the friends and family of Tim, who are numerous in this corner of the blogosphere

4 Responses to “Tim Hetherington, RIP”

  1. Lexington Green Says:

    Ernie Pyle journalism.  Yes.  God rest his soul.  The brave die but once.  

  2. zen Says:

    Very nice, Lex.

  3. Kanani Says:

    There are a few updates. Human Rights Watch and International Organisation Migration worked nonstop to ensure that Tim and Chris Hondros’ bodies were put aboard the Ionian Spirit from Mizuratu to Benghazi.  After the 20 hour voyage, the ship arrived carrying a passenger load of over 500 fleeing the besieged city. Tim, Chris, as well as the body of a recently deceased volunteer Ukranian physician were greeted by crowds. A public candle lit ceremony with 35-40 people attending took place with both the UK and US Envoys, as well as friends from the press. This morning, an a private religious service was held at the Benghazi Medical Center, administered by Fr. Thos Magro, the Bishop of Benghazi of the Roman Diocese of eastern Libya.  Arrangements are being made through diplomatic channels to send the bodies back to the UK, USA and also back to the Ukraine. More info on the doctor later.
    (As the wife of a surgeon currently in Combat, I will feature the doctor on my blog).

  4. onparkstreet Says:

    Very sad. RIP : (
    – Madhu

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