War is Hell

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LIFE magazine war photographer, Larry  Burrows, covered the fighting on the front lines during the Vietnam War and is  now being remembered for his extraordinary work as the 41 year anniversary of  his death approaches.

Mr Burrows captured the compelling images of  Operation Prairie, the U.S. offensive against the North Vietnamese near the  Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), that lasted from August 3 to October 27, 1966.

His photographs of the bloody aftermath of  the attack, juxtaposed against the lush and picturesque scenery of the Southeast  Asian nation, are being revisited on LIFE.comas the  London-born photojournalist is remembered.

Scroll down  for video.

U.S. Marines
 U.S. Marines carry the injured during a  firefight near the southern edge of the DMZ, Vietnam, October 1966
American Marines
 An American Marine during Operation  Prairie

 

During Operation Prairie
American soldier
 Marines carry an injured soldier back to the  medics for treatment following an assault on Hill 484, Vietnam, October 1966  (top). An American soldier (bottom) with a bandaged head wound looking dazed  after participating in Operation Prairie just south of the DMZ

An estimated 1,329 Americans were killed  during the operation. More than 58,000 Americans lost their lives in the  conflict in Indochina that ended in 1975.

One of the most famous images in the  collection by Burrows is the shot ‘Reaching Out,’ the moment when  wounded  Gunnery Sgt. Jeremiah Purdie, photographed with a blood-stained  bandage tied  around his head, is drawn to his fellow soldier, who lays  wounded on the  ground.

Though some of the pictures by the  renowned  war photographer did appear in the magazine in the 1970s, some  never made it to  publication and are being seen for the first time  in theLIFE.comgallery.

The war correspondent has been praised for  his indefatigable commitment to chronicle the conflict through pictures that  communicated the horror of the fighting and honored the lives lost in the  conflict in a way words just never could fully transmit.

Wounded Marine Gunnery Sgt. Jeremiah Purdie
Wounded Marine Gunnery Sgt. Jeremiah  Purdie (center, with bandaged head) reaches toward a stricken comrade after a  fierce firefight
American Marine gets bandaged during Operation Prairie
 A dazed, wounded American Marine gets bandaged  during Operation Prairie
Four Marines
Four Marines recover the body of Marine fire  team leader Leland Hammond as their company comes under fire near Hill 484. (At  right is the French-born photojournalist Catherine Leroy)

 

 

 

Burrows himself suffered a tragic end as he  worked on the front lines, he was killed on February 10, 1971 over Laos  when  his helicopter was shot down. He was 44-years-old.

Fellow photographers Henri Huet, 43,  of the  Associated Press, Kent Potter, 23, of United Press International  and Keisaburo  Shimamoto, 34, of Newsweek were also killed in the crash.

Ralph Graves, then LIFE magazine’s  managing  editor, remembered the Englishman as ‘the single bravest and most  dedicated war  photographer I know of,’ in a moving tribute he wrote following Burrows’ death.

‘He spent nine years covering the  Vietnam  War under conditions of incredible danger, not just at odd times but over and  over again.’

‘The war was his story, and he would  see it  through. His dream was to stay until he could photograph a  Vietnam at peace,’  Mr Graves added in the 1971 issue dedicated to the  fallen  correspondent.

 

U.S. Marine Phillip Wilson
 U.S. Marine Phillip Wilson as he fords a  waist-deep river with a rocket launcher over his shoulder during fighting near  the DMZ. Five days after this photograph was taken, he was killed in  combat

 

American Marines
American Marines tending to a wounded soldier  during a firefight south of the DMZ

 

Though the lost photographers were  mourned,  their remains were not discovered until 37 years later thanks to the tireless  effort spearheaded by AP writer Richard Pyle.

The remains of Mr Burrows, Mr Buet, Mr  Potter and Mr Shimamoto now sit in a stainless-steel box beneath the  floor of  the Newseum in Washington, D.C., part of a memorial gallery  honoring  journalists killed in the line of duty.

A total of 2,156 individuals, dating back as  far as 1837, are included in the museum’s memorial.

War correspondentWar correspondent: Terry Fincher of the Express (left)  and Larry Burrows (right) covering the war in Vietnam in April 1968

 

Larry Burrows Vietnam War
Larry Burrows Vietnam War Photographs
In memory: The remains of Larry Burrows and the three  other war photographers killed in the helicopter crash over Laos in 1971 were  finally discovered some 37 years later. They now reside at a memorial (bottom) to  fallen journalists at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Attribution: Leslie Larson, Mail Online

About the Common Constitutionalist

Brent, aka The Common Constitutionalist, is a Constitutional Conservative, and advocates for first principles, founders original intent and enemy of progressives. He is former Navy, Martial Arts expert. As well as publisher of the Common Constitutionalist blog, he also is a contributing writer for Political Outcast, Godfather Politics, Minute Men News (Liberty Alliance), Freedom Outpost, the Daily Caller, Vision To America and Free Republic. He also writes an exclusive weekly column for World Net Daily (WND).

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