“Not only does Huffman bring Tim back to life . . . but he also leads us through some of the most harrowing combat of our generation” (Sebastian Junger, New York Times–bestselling author of Tribe).
Tim Hetherington (1970–2011) was one of the world’s most distinguished and dedicated photojournalists, whose career was tragically cut short when he died in a mortar blast while covering the Libyan Civil War. Someone far less interested in professional glory than revealing to the world the realities of people living in extremely difficult circumstances, Hetherington nonetheless won many awards for his war reporting, and was nominated for an Academy Award for his critically acclaimed documentary, Restrepo.
In Here I Am, Alan Huffman tells Hetherington’s life story, and through it analyses, what it means to be a war reporter in the twenty-first century. Huffman recounts the camerman’s life from his first interest in photography and war reporting, through his critical role in reporting the Liberian Civil War, to his tragic death in Libya. Huffman also traces Hetherington’s photographic milestones, from his iconic and prize-winning pictures of Liberian children, to the celebrated portraits of sleeping US soldiers in Afghanistan.
“A powerfully written biography . . . This is poignant imagery and metaphor for the entire body of this extraordinary artist and humanist’s life.” —The Huffington Post
“Huffman excels at heightening the drama, depicting the rapid-fire action and constant danger of working among soldiers and guerrillas engaged in battle.” —The Boston Globe
“Huffman vividly chronicles the short life of a man drawn to danger zones to capture the horrors of modern warfare.” —Los Angeles Times
“Celebrate[s] Tim Hetherington’s life . . . Recount[s] his last days in Libya in excruciating detail.” —Time
To begin this compelling account of Tim Hetherington's harrowing life as a photojournalist, journalist Huffman (Sultana) sketches the scene of his death, which came while covering the 2011 Libyan uprising. Bleeding from a mortar wound to his leg, "propped against ammunition boxes" in a makeshift ambulance, Hetherington (1970 2011) died under the scrutiny of cameras close enough "to pick up the stubble on his chin." As a war photographer, Hetherington captured the subtle as well as the frantic commonly switching from digital to film for a more intimate effect on warfronts from Liberia to Sri Lanka. Huffman details Hetherington's early career, friendships and experiences with rebels in Africa, and influences and aesthetic struggles. These set the stage for his years in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley working on the documentary Restrepo with Sebastian Junger, which earned an Academy Award nomination. Huffman glowingly propounds that " footage and photos in the Korengal would be... among the best produced by any photographer in any war." It's this larger-than-life persona that enters Libya in the book's second half. Following the frenetic group of photographers Hetherington took up with in Misrata, Huffman offers perspectives from firsthand sources to unveil the heroism and errors of his final days.