Tuesday, June 16, 2009

faces of the fallen

I spent a lot of my day working on The Washington Post's Faces of the Fallen project, which tries to gather photos and a short bio for every American soldier killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It makes for morbid work, but at the same time, it feels very significant.

As I edited the head shots, I couldn't stop imagining how the soldier's family and friends would react. Would they be proud or angered by the project? Would they pull up the site alone or with others — share grief or experience it solely for themselves? It's a mind-boggling thing to contemplate.

It also put pressure on me as I searched for and edited photos. Each face — the enduring image of a loved one, of a father/mother, of a friend — wouldn't be a botched job on my part. I probably added 20 to 25 people to the list today (I lost count). It certainly puts a human face to the war.

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