Tyler Hicks placed 2nd in the prestigious World Press Photo competition, it was announced today. Over 98,000 images were submitted by 5,754 photographers, in 132 nations.
The Staples graduate was honored in the Spot News category. A New York Times staff photographer who now lives in Kenya, he was a short distance away last September when gunmen opened fire at an upscale Nairobi mall. At least 39 people were killed.
Standing one floor above, Tyler took this image:
Tyler Hicks’ World Press Photo shot. The woman and children shown hiding escaped unharmed. (Photo/Tyler Hicks for the New York Times)
In 2009 Tyler was a winner of the Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting for coverage of Afghanistan and Pakistan. He earned the Newspaper Photographer of the Year award from Pictures of the Year International for his work in 2006. He was a co-recipient of the George Polk Award for Foreign Reporting in 2012, for his work in Somalia and the Horn of Africa.
(For full results of the World Press Photo contest, click here.)
Time magazine has announced its Top 10 Photos of 2013. Included in the images — nearly all of disasters, either natural or man-made — is a shot from September’s mall massacre in Nairobi, Kenya.
Staples graduate Tyler Hicks — a Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times photographer who lives nearby — raced to the scene. He took this shot:
Tyler described the scene this way, in Time:
It was clear that something catastrophic was developing when I arrived at Nairobi’s upscale Westgate Mall. Gunfire had been reported, and I witnessed hundreds of victims streaming out of the building, many of them shot and bloodied. I realized this was the attack people had warned about since I moved here two years ago. Al Shabab militants were waging a violent attack on a crowded target frequented by foreigners.
After photographing the panic outside, I turned my focus to finding an approach into the mall, where I found a small number of disorganized Kenyan police and army, mixed with terrified masses trying to escape the attackers. From an upper floor I moved to the balcony of the atrium to glimpse the bloodshed below.
Bodies of victims lay lifeless where they fell, and among them a terrified woman remained stranded with two children in a café. They remained there, petrified, with quiet, everyday music continuing to play over the mall’s sound system.
I took some photographs and then retreated from the exposed position. The woman and children were later rescued unharmed.