But he took his favorite photograph while covering the U.S. intervention in Haiti. “It was 1994, right at the beginning of the fall of General Cédras,” he explains. “I went down for the Observer as a guest of the 82nd Airborne Division. I woke up the first morning and walked outside. The first thing I saw were two Haitian boys walking arm in arm past soldiers who were mounting up on Humvees fixed with 50-caliber machine guns. The first thing that came to mind was ‘Blessed are the meek because they shall inherit the earth.’ Only a few times in my career have I looked through the viewfinder and knew that I had a sparkler, but that was one.”
Growing up, my friends all had family photos from the church directory on their walls. We had portraits of Jimmy Carter and Whoopi Goldberg and images of graveyards and rock formations. “You see a lot of unusal things while traveling--a lot of pretty things and interesting things,” Dad says.
As we stand on the speedway rooftop sharing stories about the road, it amazes me that my father, who knew he wanted to be
a photographer at age 14, remains endlessly enthusiastic about what he does. “Photography is my job, my hobby, and my passion,”
he says. “I thought I would have gotten tired of it by now. But it gets more and more exciting every day. You’re documenting
A NOTE TO OUR READERS
"Life and the Fast Lane" is from the September 2008 issue of North Carolina Living: People & Places, a special section of Southern Living for our subscribers in North Carolina.