Winning Photographer Kills Himself and Leaves Suicide Note About World
Summary of the eRumor The eRumor includes a
dramatic photograph of a starving child being watched by a vulture.
The email says that the picture was taken in Sudan 1994 by Kevin
Carter who won a Pulitzer prize for it.
The eRumor says he committed suicide three months later and left a
note about world hunger.
The picture is real as is the story
of the photographer's suicide, but the alleged wording of his
suicide note is fabricated.
Kevin Carter was a South African photojournalist.
The picture of the vulture stalking a starving girl is real and was
taken in Sudan in 1993.
He was awarded Pulitzer prize in May of 1994 for the picture.
Two months later he connected a hose to the exhaust pipe of his
pickup truck and committed suicide.
His long time friend Judith Matloff wrote in the Columbia Journalism
review that Carter was the kind of person who seemed more affected
by some of the violent events he photographed.
She says that he would often return from upsetting assignments with
bouts of crying, drinking, or using drugs.
She says that after he shot his Pulitzer prize winning picture, he
"sat under a tree and cried and chain-smoked" and couldn't
distance himself from the horror of what he saw.
He was criticized for not helping the girl in the picture and said
he did not know what happened to her.
In his suicide note he said he was "depressed...without
phone...money for tent...money for child support...money for
He also said he was haunted by vivid memories of killings, corpses,
anger, pain, starving or wounded children, and trigger-happy
The eRumor includes a comment about world hunger that was created by
someone along the way who decided to turn the picture into a lesson
about not wasting food.
Such wording was not included in Carter's suicide note.
Last updated 8/10/05
A real example of the eRumor as it has
appeared on the Internet:
I promise I will never waste my food no matter how bad it can taste and
how full I may be. I pray that He will protect this little boy, guide
and deliver him away from his misery. I pray that we will be more
sensitive towards the world around us and not be blinded by our own
selfish nature and interests.
I hope this picture will always serve as a reminder to us that how
fortunate we are and that we must never ever take things for granted.
Please don't break.. keep on forwarding to our friends On this good day.
Let's make a prayer for the suffering in anywhere anyplace around the
globe and send this friendly reminder to others "Think & look
at this... when you complain about your food and the food we wasted