The Soldier in the Snow: A dark journey down the rabbit hole of war photos, blanketed in snow.
February 21, 2023 | Source: Monroe Gallery of Photography
Private First Class Tony Vaccaro, carrying an M-1 rifle and an Argus C3 brick camera, photographed this scene January 11, 1945, during the Battle of the Bulge. At first glance, it looks like a painting - spartan and stark, the composition as cold as the day.
“I saw the soldier that was lying down so peacefully, so beautiful as if an artist had drawn it.” Vaccaro recollected in the excellent 2016 documentary Underfire: The Untold Story of Pfc. Tony Vaccaro. “Death, that is beautiful. It’s a contradiction. You want the ugliest aspect of mankind, death, to be beautiful. Otherwise it can not be a monument.”
Vaccaro died in 2022 at the age of 100. The photo, titled “White Death, Requiem for a Dead Soldier,” was published alongside Vaccaro’s obit in The New York Times.