An Associated Press photographer collapsed of a heart attack and died right in the middle of the action Tuesday night, as Texas A&M celebrated its win over Duke in the Chick-fil-A Bowl game.
This photograph of Texas A&M Head Coach Kevin Sumlin being doused with water is among the last photos Dave Martin captured. Martin hurried onto the field after the game ended to take pictures of Texas A&M’s celebration of their comeback win, but he suffered a heart attack almost immediately. Martin quickly received medical attention, but it was to no avail.
The 59-year-old Martin had worked for the AP since 1983, when he began his career with the organization as a staff photographer. According to the AP, Martin covered everything from local sports to Hurricane Katrina to the Olympics. He was chosen as the AP regional photo editor for the South in 2004.
"Dave Martin was an excellent photojournalist, a consummate and dedicated professional and a wonderful person," said Santiago Lyon, AP vice president and director of photography.
AP's correspondent for Birmingham, Alabama spoke of Martin’s dedication to his job. "He covered wars and a revolution, sports and tornadoes, the Alabama legislature and presidents, and he typically had the best picture no matter what the event," said Jay Reeves.