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Terry Fincher

Terry Fincher (1931 – 2008) was an award-winning British photojournalist. His career took off in 1956 when he accompanied British forces that invaded Egypt during the Suez Crisis. He later did five tours of Vietnam covering the war there for the Daily Express, as well as reporting extensively from trouble spots in the Middle East and Africa. He was British press photographer of the year for 1957, 1959, 1964, and 1967, and runner-up in 1968 (a still unbeaten record). In a classic anecdote from his Vietnam years, Fincher recalled sharing a trench with the photographer Larry Burrows, of Life magazine. Fincher remembered: "That night it was pitch black and the rockets and shells were coming in thick and fast, landing even closer than the previous night. I tried to sleep through the noise, covering my face with my steel helmet, but it was impossible." Fincher wondered whether to opt for helicopter evacuation to escape the war zone, by now strewn with the bodies of American soldiers. He remembered: "In the morning I asked Larry what we should do that day. He looked up at the dark, brooding sky. 'Exposure one second at f2.8,' he said with a grin." (Burrows later died when his helicopter was shot down over Laos.)

Known to be a particularly kind and gentle man, the photographer Bob Aylott remembers Terry as "the finest Fleet Street photographer I ever encountered".


Terry Fincher is renowned for his war photography, having covered, among others, the Suez crisis, five tours in Vietnam...