Ron Edmonds, Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer, dead

 June 2, 2024

Ron Edmonds, the Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer known for his images of the Ronald Reagan shooting, has died. 

The Washington Post reports that Edmonds died on Friday, at the age of 77.

"Ron Edmonds . . . died May 31 at a hospital in Falls Church, Va. He was 77."

The outlet also provides details about his cause of death, reporting, "He died of pneumonia linked to a bacterial infection, said his wife, Grace Feliciano Edmonds."

Who was Ron Edmonds?

He was a longtime photographer for the Associated Press who is particularly well-known for capturing the assassination attempt that was made against President Ronald Reagan on March 30, 1981. This was not long after Edmonds was given the Reagan assignment.

"President Ronald Reagan had just spoken to members of the AFL-CIO at a Hilton hotel not far from the White House. As Reagan emerged from the hotel, John Hinckley Jr. used a revolver to fire at the president, his aides, and his protective detail," the Associated Press reports.

The outlet adds, "Edmonds was in place for an exclusive series of pictures taken across the roof of Reagan’s limousine as Reagan was struck and then shoved down and into the vehicle. It sped to the hospital where doctors saved the president’s life."

Edmonds, in fact, was the only photographer who managed to photograph the entire sequence of events.

For those photographs, he was given the Pulitzer Prize.

Edmonds reflects on the famous photographs

A little over a decade ago, Edmonds reflected on that memorable day, which he thought was going to be "boring."

"Meet and greet, a little speech, shake some hands. I actually thought it was going to be a rather boring event," he said.

But, of course, it was anything but boring. He said:

Everything happened in such a quick, split-second. If you looked to your right to see what the shot, what the noise was, and looked back, the president was already gone. The president immediately, when the first pop went off, he kind of grimaced in his face and that’s when I pushed the shutter down.

Regarding the photographs, Edmonds said, "You did the best you could with the abilities that you’ve got. I had the camera on him and I mean I saw everything through the viewfinder."

When Edmonds accepted the Pulitzer Prize on April 12, 1982, he said, "I wish it had been for a picture that had not been of violence, of people being hurt."

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