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Remembering IU Grad, Photojournalist Michel Du Cille

Ducille

[photo1]

Michel du Cille, a photojournalist and Indiana University graduate, died last Thursday while on assignment in Liberia for the Washington Post.

Du Cille, 58, had been in Liberia covering the plight of Ebola and collapsed while traveling on foot from a village. He was pronounced dead of an apparent heart attack at a hospital.

According to NPR:

Back in October, du Cille wrote for the Post that this assignment was tough because throughout his career, he had always aimed for compassion and dignity.

"Respect is often the last and only thing that the world can offer a deceased or dying person," he wrote. "Yet the camera itself seems to be a betrayal of the dignity I so hope to offer. Sometimes, the harshness of a gruesome scene simply cannot be sanitized. How does one give dignity to the image of a woman who has died and is lying on the ground, unattended, uncovered and alone as people walk by or gaze from a distance? But I believe that the world must see the horrible and dehumanizing effects of Ebola. The story must be told; so one moves around with tender care, gingerly, without extreme intrusion."



Du Cille graduated from IU in 1981 and went on to win three Pulitzer Prizes. Jim Kelly, a photojournalism professor at the IU School of Journalism, arranged a remembrance to du Cille on Sunday.

Some of du Cille's former professors and colleagues gathered around the new Ernie Pyle statue next to Franklin Hall to honor his memory.

[photo2]

Bonnie Brownlee, department chair at the journalism school, says du Cille left an enduring legacy at IU.

"Michel du Cille has been a loyal supporter of his school, and his work has inspired all of us, faculty and generations of students," Brownlee said in a statement. "His death leaves us all in great sorrow and, at the same time, in gratitude for the light his work has shone on so many of the important national and global issues of our time."

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