Tony Vaccaro

Tony Vaccaro is one of the few people alive who can claim to have survived the Battle of Normandy and COVID-19. 

At the age of 21, Tony was drafted into the WWII, landing at Omaha Beach, six days after the first landings at Normandy. Denied access to the Signal Corps, Tony was determined to photograph the war, and had his portable 35mm Argus C-3 with him from the start. For the next 272 days, Tony fought on the front lines of the warfighting the enemy while also documenting his experience at great risk, developing his photos in combat helmets at night and hanging the negatives from tree branches.

After the war, Tony remained in Germany to photograph the rebuilding of the country for Stars And Stripes magazine. Returning to the US in 1950, Tony started his career as a commercial photographer, eventually working for virtually every major publication: Look, Life, Harper’s Bazaar, Town and Country, Newsweek, and many more. Tony went on to become one the most sought after photographers of his day.

Now, at age 99, he is recovered from COVID-19. He attributes his longevity to “blind luck, red wine” and determination.

Blind Magazine: How Tony Vaccaro Used Photography as the Antidote to Inhumanity

Short YouTube biographical video