Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2004/09/18

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Subject: [Leica] FW: NPPA: A Message from Dirck Halstead about Eddie Adams
From: tedgrant at (Ted Grant)
Date: Sat Sep 18 22:58:57 2004
References: <009a01c49dd4$caa16960$>

B. D. Colen offered extremely sad news of a friend:
Subject: [Leica] FW: NPPA: A Message from Dirck Halstead about Eddie Adams

> Eddie Adams is dying.
> Normally, this would be whispered.
> In this case, there is no point.
> Eddie has ALS  - "Lou Gehrig's Disease." It isn't his fault. He didn't
> do anything to get it. It just happens. It is terminal. Period.<<<<<<<<

I unfortunately have been ripped pretty hard by this announcement because
Eddie and I have been friends since 1967 in Montreal when we first met by
absolutely weird circumstances.

My assignment approach has always been... "First there and last to leave!"
In this manner you always have best shot for shooting position. Being last
to leave always gave you the possibility of something completely different
compared to those who ran out as soon as they could.

It was the opening of EXPO 67 and I was assigned to the main stage of
ceremonies and figured I'd be first there, 2 hours early as that should beat
anyone else and give me the best opportunity to set up a remote camera to
shoot a special shot I'd thought of. One showing the VIP's and downtown
Montreal all in one frame. It meant get in there set camera on long
mono-pole with motor and remote sensor to fire the camera from behind the

Not a sole in sight as I climbed the stairs and as I walked on stage there
was a "camera on a pole in my position just as I'd planned." And still not a
person anywhere. So I go over to have a look and to say the least I'm
completely pissed off because it was my idea and who did this?

While I'm standing there in "fuming stage" I hear a voice from behind the
curtains, "hey! hey! over here."
I looked over and there was a hand beckoning me to the curtain. I went over
and stepped behind and lo and behold one AP shooter Eddie Adams said...
"Don't stand around looking at the camera on the pole as the security guys
haven't seen it and if they do they'll screw-up my shot by making me take it

I responded... "Your shot? F...k you! It's mine!  I figured I'd be first
here and get mine up for the same picture. So what the hell are you doing
here?" Eddie says.. "Mines up cause you're second and I'm first!" Then
smiled. I could've killed him right there and then! However that moment and
some follow-up time later having a few beers we hit it off.

Unfortunately the next year in Saigon I missed him due to his hasty
departure after the picture of the  VC being shot in the head.

But over the ensuing years, Montreal during the Summer Olympics 1976 or we'd
run into each other and joked about who was first and I always lost and
bought the beer! :-) However! LA 1984 Summer Olympics I beat him hands down
first at the swimming pool at 2.30 a.m and getting one of the 12 photo
positions at the start-finish end of the pool.

When he arrived there I was half asleep and in the last position available.

"When the hell did you get here?" asked Eddie. "Remember be first there?" I
said ;-) "So from now on yer buying the beer. That'll teach you to be first
there and last leave, now we're even for Montreal!" :-) We both laughed
about an event from 17 years earlier and yes he did by the next round of
beer. :-)

And today? :-(

It's tough when someone from your younger years as a photojournalist is
slipping away and yet the memories of that person and our camaraderie are as
vivid as the first day we hid behind the curtains so long ago in Montreal,
the swimming pool of LA. and several other encounters over the years.

I suppose it's best to say, "I knew Eddie Adams, shot beside him and we
shared a few beers as working photojournalists!"  He'll be missed, but never
from my memories.


In reply to: Message from bdcolen at (B. D. Colen) ([Leica] FW: NPPA: A Message from Dirck Halstead about Eddie Adams)