The remains of two veteran award-winning photographers arrived today in the Libyan rebel stronghold of Benghazi, brought by ferry from Misrata where the pair was killed Wednesday.
American 41-year-old Chris Hondros, a photographer for Getty Images, and English native 40-year-old Tim Hetherington, Academy Award-nominated co-director of the Afghanistan war documentary "Restrepo," died after they were caught in the crossfire during an attack by pro-Gadhafi forces.
Both men made a career by capturing arresting images from war zones for more than a decade, from Kosovo to Afghanistan and finally Libya. Friends of both said that they risked their lives repeatedly to help show the world a true picture of war and the suffering -- and humanity -- therein.
Hondros, a New York native, grew up in North Carolina and later moved back to New York to focus on international photography, according to a biography posted on his website. In a tribute penned by Getty Images founder Jonathan Klein Wednesday, Klein said Hondros told him just a few weeks ago why he did such a dangerous job.
"When he accompanied our colleague, photographer Joe Raedle, home from captivity in Libya a few weeks ago, he sat with me and told me in no uncertain terms that he had to cover the stories and take the pictures — so that the world could know what was really happening and could act to prevent more human suffering," Klein wrote. "Chris never shied away from the front line and his work in Libya was no exception."
Hetherington's family released a statement after learning of his death, which said, "It is with great sadness we learned that our son and brother photographer and filmmaker Tim Hetherington was killed today in Misrata, Libya... Tim will be remembered for his amazing images and his Academy Award nominated documentary 'Restrepo' which he co-produced with his friend Sebastian Junger."
Friend: Tim Hetherington 'Wanted to Understand Life'
Hetherington, who was born in Liverpool, England, made his trip to Libya on his own dime, according to Junger.
"Tim with his camera wanted to understand life. Life includes war, unfortunately," Junger told ABC News hours after news of Hetherington's death emerged. "He would say, 'Look, war is terrible. Terrible things happen in war. But people also love really profoundly in war and they laugh in war. They do generous things and they do cowardly things. Everything happens in war.'"
Junger and Hetherington's collaboration in Afghanistan won the pair a duPont award for an ABC News' Nightline series called "The Other War".
Another British photographer, 28-year-old Guy Martin, was injured by shrapnel in the attack but underwent surgery and is in "serious but stable" condition, according to a report by the British Journal of Photography. A fourth photographer, Michael Christopher Brown, suffered minor injuries in Wednesday's attack.
The photographers had accompanied rebel fighters to Misrata's city center and soon came under repeated mortar attack by pro-Gadhafi forces, according to a report by The Washington Post. All four of the injured were rushed to nearby hospitals, the report said, but Hetherington and Hondros did not survive.