Exactly one year ago now, my daughter Erica and I were tooling around Cape Town in a right-hand drive rental car, driven by my long-time friend, Harry Hamburg. When we went to pick up the car at the agency, I had the sudden realization that I'd never driven on the left side of the road in a right-hand drive vehicle and that if I did, I'd likely cause some terrible incident. Harry, being the "anything for you" kind of guy, offered to chauffeur us around Cape Town as much as we wanted, just because...because he had time, knew the town well, and loved the adventure.
If it hadn't been for Harry, we wouldn't have seen as much, nor had as much fun.He took us all over Cape Town, to the Cape of Good Hope, to Boulders Beach to see the penguins and all the sights along the way and back. When Erica and I went paragliding off Signal Hill, Harry was on the ground below taking our photos like the trooper he was.
Harry was a very special guy. I say "was," because I just learned Saturday morning from his son, Bruce, that he died suddenly this past week of a heart attack. And as Bruce put it, "without suffering."
Harry was a former photo journalist for the New York Daily News. A legend in his own time, his career spanned more than 40 years. Regularly, Harry would send me photos he'd candidly taken, sometimes of just something he had found interesting, but often of people with whom he'd gotten up front and up close with that only a handful of people in the whole world would have had that privilege. He was on a first-name basis with a fistful of American presidents on both sides of the political divide. He could tell you inside stories on all of them — the kind that the press never heard about.
I met Harry many years ago — when he first decided to move to France, then changed his mind and went to England for a while. We had our love of photography in common and spent untold numbers of hours enjoying in that shared appreciation. In fact, I've often written about my time with Harry in this very Nouvellettre®.
I dedicate this Nouvellettre® to Harry Hamburg and to all the people whose lives were touched by him and his camera lens. Included here are just a few of the fabulous photos he sent me over the years.
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