On Thursday, the New York Times lost one of its most preeminent correspondents, Anthony Shadid. Most known for his breathtaking stories from the heart of bombarded Baghdad, Anthony Shadid continued his work in today’s troubled Syria. Shadid died while reporting on the uprising against Syria’s president.
Perhaps many imagined it was the turmoil in Syria that took Anthony Shadid life, but the truth is this courageous correspondent died from an asthma attack. The irony would have surely stunned him too, as through his life he had seen and experienced a lot, including surviving a gunshot and being captured in Libya. And what got to him was a common asthma attack.
According to Associated Press, Tyler Hicks, photographer for the Times told the newspaper that Anthony Shadid had suffered several severe asthma attacks over the past few weeks. Hicks said that one minute Shadid looked OK and the next he simply collapsed.
Times’ photographer said that after Shadid collapsed he noticed he “was unconscious and that his breathing was very faint and shallow”. Only a few minutes after, Hicks noticed that Shadid “was no longer breathing”.
Shadid’s death impacted many people, from those close to him, to Times’ Publisher and even Lebanon’s Prime Minister Najib Mikati. Arthur Suzlberger, Times Publisher, said that Anthony Shadid “was one of our generation’s finest reporters”, “an exceptionally kind and generous human being”. His writings “brought to his readers an up-close look at the globe’s many war-torn regions, often at a great personal risk. We were fortunate to have Anthony as a colleague and we mourn his death”, ended Suzlberger his statement.
Lebanon’s Prime Minister Najib Mikati reacted on Twitter with the following statement: “Sincere condolences to journalist Anthony Shadid’s (RIP) family, friends & New York Times colleagues. I’ve known and admired him personally. N.M”.
John Daniszewski, Senior Managing Editor for Associated Press, also talked about Shadid in good terms. Shadid was “a brilliant colleague who stood out both for his elegant writing and for his deep and nuanced understanding of the region”, said Daniszewski, reffering to the time they worked together in Baghdad, during the U.S. invasion of 2003.