AP photographer wins photojournalism awardMarch 25, 2010
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Associated Press photographer Emilio Morenatti, who lost his left foot while on assignment in Afghanistan last year, won the top award on Thursday for the National Press Photographers Association.
The group named Morenatti its 2010 Photojournalist of the Year for large markets.
"I feel completely full of energy," Morenatti said. "This is absolutely amazing news. I never imaged a few hours before going back to my job, I would have this great news."
After about seven months of rehabilitation, Morenatti was set to return to work for the AP this weekend. The Spanish native will be based in Barcelona.
Morenatti was wounded in August while on assignment with the U.S. military in southern Afghanistan. Two U.S. soldiers and AP Television News videographer Andi Jatmiko were also injured when their vehicle ran over a bomb planted in the desert.
Morenatti was first taken to a hospital in Kandahar, Afghanistan, then later transferred to a Baltimore hospital, where he was fitted with a prosthesis and underwent rehabilitation.
The AP's director of photography, Santiago Lyon, said he expects the award to give Morenatti a boost as he heads back to work.
"I am thrilled for Emilio," Lyon said. "He is an extremely talented photographer and well deserving of this prestigious award."
Morenatti has years of experience in war zones. Based in Islamabad, he has worked for the AP in Afghanistan, Israel and the Palestinian territories. Pictures of the Year International named him Newspaper Photographer of the Year in 2009.
In 2006, he was kidnapped in Gaza City and freed unharmed after 15 hours. The following year, he suffered a broken leg from a fragment of a stun grenade while covering a protest in a West Bank village.
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