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Tragedy and triumph: The career of photographer Nick Ut

Teddy Hans

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Wed, August 14, 2019  /  12:11 pm
Tragedy and triumph: The career of photographer Nick Ut

Iconic: Award-winning photojournalist Nick Ut poses in front of his work titled "Terror of War". (JP/Wienda Parwitasari)

It was early June of 1972 when Nick Ut heard the Viet Cong had locked down a highway near Trang Bang, about 40 kilometers west of Saigon in Vietnam. As a 21-year-old photographer for the Associated Press (AP), Nick did what any good war correspondent would do. He went toward the action, hoping to get a glimpse of something worth documenting. Little did he know, his life would soon change forever. Nick was born in South Vietnam and had been covering the war that was ravaging his home country since he was 16. His older brother, Huynh Thanh My, was shot and killed in 1965 covering the war for the AP. When asked why he pursued such a dangerous job, Huynh always responded the same way. “I hope one day I will take a picture that stops the war,” Huynh said. That message inspired and motivated his younger brother, who had already fallen in lo...