We Must Not Ignore This Photo

Though some are 'disgusted,' witnessing the 'Falling Man' is vital, author says
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 11, 2008 4:52 PM CDT
Sept. 11, 2001, in New York.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – The “Falling Man” photo reproduced worldwide has disappeared from respectable media, Tom Junod writes in Esquire, but to avert our eyes is to pretend the horrific choices made Sept. 11, 2001, don’t exist. “We have somehow taken it upon ourselves to deem their deaths unworthy of witness,” Junod writes of “the jumpers,” “because we have somehow deemed the act of witness, in this one regard, unworthy of us.”

The man in the photograph remains unidentified, though Junod tracked down possible families, some openly hostile to the implication that “their son's or husband's or father's” life ended that way. “One of the most famous photographs in human history became an unmarked grave, and the man buried inside its frame—the Falling Man—became the Unknown Soldier in a war whose end we have not yet seen.”