Photo by Ramin Talaie/Getty Images.
Journalism lost a crucial voice and beloved reporter Thursday when New York Times foreign correspondent Anthony Shadid died on a reporting assignment in Syria. He was 43.
Shadid passed away from an asthma attack after showing symptoms the previous day, according to the Times. At the time, he was traveling by horseback on his way out of Syria, where he had been covering the ongoing government crackdown.
The media united in eulogizing the two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, who had previously worked at the Associated Press, the Washington Post and the Boston Globe. A Lebanese American, Shadid was known for his passion for the Middle East. Last year, he and three Times photographers were captured in Libya by Muammar Qaddafi supporters and held for a week before being released.
Shadid was the author of "Legacy of the Prophet: Despots, Democrats and the New Politics of Islam" and "Night Draws Near: Iraq's People in the Shadow of America's War." At the time of his death he was working on a more personal project, the story of his ancestral home in Lebanon.
The Washington Post's Erik Wemple on Shadid’s legacy:
That there’s no one to replace Shadid shouldn’t be interpreted as a knock on the state of journalism, either.
Because it wasn’t just that Shadid spoke fluent Arabic. It wasn’t just that Shadid had a passion for the Middle East. And it wasn’t just that Shadid could write “poetry on deadline,” in the words of a former colleague.
It was that Shadid had all of those traits and he could find and tell a story.
From Time magazine's Bobby Ghosh:
I know how chefs feel about Ferran Adria, musicians about Bruce Springsteen, economists about Amartya Sen. I felt that way about Anthony Shadid: total and utter awe. In an era blessed with more than its fair share of brilliant foreign correspondents, he was the best of the breed. And his death, at just 43, leaves our profession bereft.
Twitter and Facebook were flooded with posts about Shadid, often quoting his writing or interviews. Fans across the world remembered his often emotional accounts of instability and war in the region, as well his love for the Green Bay Packers:
@Greg Mathias wrote: Sad to lose his perspective, praying for his family
@AsiaBrown: I never met him but I looked up to him and admired his unbiased reporting on the Middle East.
@Billkirkp: A moment of grief for Anthony Shahid, who was the best role model for journalists in the last 30-40 years.
Shadid is survived by his wife and two children.