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Mount St. Helens Eruption, 1980

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The photographer was a member of my photography darkroom club in Portland Oregon..

He knew he was going to die, so he put his camera, with film on the ground, with his wallet, and laid on top of it .

His body was recovered, and the film also.

I have admired his presence of mind since 1980, every time Mt. St. Helens pictures are shown.

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9 hours ago, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

He knew he was going to die, so he put his camera, with film on the ground, with his wallet, and laid on top of it .

His body was recovered, and the film also.

What did you do with his wallet?

 

Too soon?

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9 hours ago, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

He knew he was going to die

This particular photo is the Red Pinto photo, and the usual story is that it was taken by Lasher a survivor, and the person you refer to is a newspaper reporter/photograher named Robert Landsberg.

 

Note this take on it from https://www.hemmings.com/blog/2019/07/26/the-story-behind-that-photo-of-the-pinto-in-front-of-the-mt-st-helens-eruption/ :

Had Lasher made it even over the next ridge, he’d almost certainly have died. According to Cooper’s telling of the story, “Luckily for him, and he did not realize until later just how lucky, he was on the opposite side of that ridge in front, because the entire forest was flattened from the ridge down, and he was in the lee side and protected from most of the blast.”

He did, however, realize that he had to get out of there in a hurry. Though the volcano blew out a pyroclastic flow almost due north and Lasher found himself more northeast of the blast, one mapshows that temperatures near where Lasher found himself rose to 680 degrees Fahrenheit. According to the same map, most of the 57 people who died that day were positioned to the north or northwest of the volcano, but at least four of them were in Lasher’s vicinity.

. . .

(Cooper or Lasher may have conflated this part of the story with the fate of Robert Landsberg, a newspaper photographer who, upon realizing he wouldn’t be able to escape the eruption after photographing it, carefully rewound his film, packed away his camera gear, and laid over the gear to preserve his shots.)

. . .

So, yes, the photographer behind that mystery photograph did survive to see it widely disseminated. 

 

 

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