2012-02-17 / Obituaries

N.Y. Times correspondent Anthony Shadid dies in Syria

BY CRISTIAN SALAZAR The Associated Press

NEW YORK

New York Times correspondent Anthony Shadid, a twotime Pulitzer Prize winner whose dispatches captured untold stories from Baghdad under “shock and awe” bombing to Libya wracked by civil war, died Thursday of an apparent asthma attack in Syria while reporting on the uprising against its president.

Shadid, 43, who survived a gunshot wound in the West Bank in 2002 and was captured for six days in Libya last year, was returning with smugglers from Syria to Turkey when he collapsed, the Times said.

Times photographer Tyler Hicks told the newspaper that Shadid had suffered one bout of asthma the first night, followed by a more severe attack a week later on the way out of the country.

“ I stood next to him and asked if he was OK, and then he collapsed,” Hicks told the Times.

Hicks said that Shadid was unconscious and that his breathing was “very faint” and “very shallow.” He said that after a few minutes he could see that Shadid “was no longer breathing.”

Hicks carried Shadid’s body to Turkey after this latest attack, the newspaper said.

“Anthony was one of our generation’s finest reporters,” Times Publisher Arthur Sulzberger said in a statement. “He was also an exceptionally kind and generous human being. He brought to his readers an up-close look at the globe’s many war-torn regions, often at great personal risk. We were fortunate to have Anthony as a colleague, and we mourn his death.”

Lebanon’s Prime Minister Najib Mikati wrote on his Twitter account: “Sincere condolences to journalist Anthony Shadid’s ( RIP) family, friends & New York Times colleagues. I’ve known and admired him personally. N.M.”

Shadid’s father, Buddy Shadid, told The Associated Press on Thursday his son had asthma all his life and had medication with him.

“(But) he was walking to the border because it was too dangerous to ride in the car,” the father said. “He was walking behind some horses — he’s more allergic to those than anything else — and he had an asthma attack.”

Shadid, an American of Lebanese descent, had a wife, Nada Bakri, and a son and a daughter. He had worked previously for the AP, The Washington Post and The Boston Globe. He won Pulitzer Prizes for international reporting in 2004 and 2010 when he was with the Post.

In 2004, the Pulitzer Board praised “his extraordinary ability to capture, at personal peril, the voices and emotions of Iraqis as their country was invaded, their leader toppled and their way of life upended.”

Shadid also was the author of three books, including “House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East,” in which he wrote about restoring his family’s home in Lebanon, forthcoming next month from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Return to top