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Remembering NPR's David Gilkey And Zabihullah Tamanna

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

One year ago today, we heard a few stark words about an NPR photographer.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

David Gilkey had been killed in Afghanistan, along with our Afghan interpreter Zabihullah Tamanna. They died after they came under fire in a Taliban ambush. NPR correspondent Tom Bowman was just ahead of them in that convoy. After the attack, Bowman's vehicle turned back to base.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

TOM BOWMAN, BYLINE: And we waited maybe an hour or two, and then an Afghan army truck came in, and they opened the back and there were two dead bodies in the back and one was our translator. We recognized him immediately. And then we were just completely distraught. We said, where's David?

INSKEEP: They soon learned that Gilkey had been killed, along with Zabihullah Tamanna, who was married with three young kids.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

BOWMAN: He would do anything with us. He would help us more than you can imagine, getting interviews and going places and just a very kind, kind man.

MARTIN: And David Gilkey...

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

BOWMAN: He was a real character. I know people in the newsroom called him Smiley because he never smiled. He was really gruff. But he's a real sensitive soul, and he was a real complete artist. His pictures - his pictures were absolutely beautiful, and the ones he recently took on a mission we went on were just unbelievable. Any story you did, he made it better because of his pictures.

INSKEEP: That's Bowman shortly after David Gilkey's death, and now, here's David Gilkey's voice reflecting on photographs he took in Haiti after the earthquake there in 2010.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

DAVID GILKEY: I think at the end of the day, that's what it's about in a situation like this is getting people to do something. It's not just reporting, and it's not just taking pictures. It's do those products, do the visuals, do the stories, do they change somebody's mind enough to take action? So if we're doing our part, you know, it gets people to do their part. Hopefully.

MARTIN: There is a wall inside the Newseum here in Washington, D.C., a glass wall with hundreds of names etched into it of journalists who have lost their lives trying to do their part.

INSKEEP: Today, more names will be added, including David Gilkey and Zabihullah Tamanna. Gilkey was known for going into combat zones without a zoom lens on the camera. He wanted to be close enough to the story to see it and feel it and make you feel it.

(SOUNDBITE OF LUDOVICO EINAUDI'S "FOUR DIMENSIONS") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.