Thursday, April 14, 2011

Luis Sinco and The Other Marlboro Man


Picking up from the subject of the Marlboro Man from the previous post, today's story features the image of the other Marlboro Man, sometimes known as the Marlboro Marine.

Taken during the November 2004 battle in Fallujah, Iraq and published in over 150 newspapers in the same month, the photograph above shows Marine Lance Corporal James Blake Miller, tired and bloodied, a newly lit cigarette in his mouth, gazing away from the camera.

The striking photo was taken by photojournalist Luis Sinco who was embedded with Miller's Regiment at that time. They had just secured a house after a long night of intense fire, and Sinco caught Miller momentarily resting against the wall just as the sunrise was peeking over the horizon.

During its initial publication, Miller was showered with praise during his time in Iraq. Today however, it is a sad reminder of the extended and complicated involvement of foreign nations in Iraqi and Afghanistan, and of post traumatic stress disorder.

After being medically discharged after an outburst caused by his condition, Miller had the chance to go to Washington to share his distressing experiences with some US representatives. Amazingly, none of the congressmen were inclined to involve themselves in this cause. As Miller put it, "it was a slap in the face" to find so many elected leaders bearing a polite but apathetic view towards veterans in need of PTSD help.

Miller is now separated from his wife and family, and lives alone.

You can find out more about the Marlboro Marine by reading this Los Angeles Times article or viewing this mini-documentary hosted by Media Storm.

112 comments:

R.C said...

As an army brat....this is just depressing. No wonder my dad doesn't want me following his footsteps. Thanks for the read.

Colin B said...

>Miller is now separated from his wife and family, and lives alone.

poor guy D:

The Emancipator said...

very striking indeed. I remember when that came out.

What's going on in the world? said...

I can't even begin to imagine what he's been through

tissue rejection said...

This is a picture that sure tells a story

Astronomy Pirate said...

It is rather sad how our country treats our veterans. I have quite a few friends who have served. I know one girl who had particularly bad PTSD and tried to get a puppy to help her calm down, as recommended by her specialist. Our University kicked her out of the dorms and tried to expel her from class. She was a good person, but given no respect for what she had been put through.

A fantastic picture though.

Moobeat said...

I think I remember seeing this photo around in the paper,

A Hermit said...

Powerful image and a very sad story

D4 said...

I hadn't seen that photo before. Definitely see the appeal, and a sad story to go with it. :/

Kboy71 said...

Very powerful photo

Aaron M. Gipson said...

I won't go into detail, but I've seen through his eyes as well.

ironchefman said...

That thousand yard stare is really striking. War photography is certainly a haunting but interesting field.

Long_Ding said...

Amazing photograph! His eyes tell more than a thousand words could.

OatmealStout said...

That's an amazing picture!

Meghan Moran said...

That's a real sad story. That mile long stare speaks volumes.

Alixander said...

A photo is worth a thousand words indeed. Lots of back story to the photo.

izzfoshizzz said...

sucks man, never want to go to war

ed said...

reminds me that war sucks

David said...

Very striking photograph.

Franco - TRG said...

That's a classic photo.
It looks badass and rebellious.
I like it.
:D

Grafted said...

I used to live at Camp Lejeune N.C, and met many Marines suffering from PTSD. It's very disheartening to think about.

Bart said...

cop killa!

Inhia said...

'Does the first comments dance'

I never heard of this guy. Yes PTSD and polite apathy go hand in hand.

God I love a bunch of old men getting together to chat about amending something that doesn't need amending

Go tax dollars!

Quetopia said...

Thanks for the doc link. These guys are the real deal.

Brut said...

Malboro man is epic.

Dale said...

it must be hell.

DerpFiles said...

A sad story, I wish we cared more about mental health in this country.

Fang said...

150 newpapers publishments in one month? Bet he earned quite the bit from it.

T. Roger Thomas said...

I hope things work out well for him.

A Kid At Heart said...

Such a manly man...cigarettes will do that.

The Angry Lurker said...

A truly great picture but a very sad story.

N4M3L3SS said...

anyone who smokes a cig after some killn wins

mac-and-me said...

Great shot and interesting (and sad) backstory.

AllenTesch said...

Just so sad what happened to him.

Wintermute said...

why is he separated from everyone and lives alone? I do kind of wonder how real this photo is, or if it was just made up.

Jessica Thompson said...

This is a really striking image...

Bonjour Tristesse said...

What a sad story and what an incredible image.

Reilly said...

Such a great photo. But didn't knew the story behind it, thx!

Robert said...

This is patriotic,
Fighting for flag and country

Generally Disgruntled said...

I took a visual rhetoric course in college, and this was one of the first photographs we discussed. It's probably one of the most iconic images of the Iraq war

jblogger45 said...

interesting

Kanika Bishnoi said...

Reminds me how hard our soldiers have to work, so that we can have a peaceful night of sleep... I SALUTE to these brave men!

Jaccstev said...

What a sad story. That photo is surely means countless words.

Alphabeta said...

Sad story. I can't imagine how devastating PTSD is - I hope I never have to suffer it.

M.D. Flodström said...

I always wanted to join the navy, maybe I should think twice before making my decision...

duffboi said...

Sad story. Intense picture. Looks like he needed that cigarette.

lemoz said...

Very cool blog man love what your doing so far will def follow you and comment everyday. I was hoping you could do the same for me.

Trolske said...

European army brat here. Goverments ignoring the problem of PTSD isn't just an american problem.

Tony Van Helsing said...

This is a moving story indeed.

Leanora's Blog said...

More people that have seen and been involved in war should have more support, they shouldn't be pushed aside and forgotten about.

Beau Thompson said...

You can just barely see the leftovers of face paint. Epic photo.

Razor said...

badass looking guy, doubt he's happy in that photo, though...

Banacek said...

I've heard that war is hell. Nice picture, though.

Shutterbug said...

It's a nice photo, but I still don't like smokers! It's gross! :P

Necroticism said...

A very powerful image.

THUNDERCAT said...

Damn, this is hella sad....I can't even make a joke about this one and I have the largest "asshole" bone in my body.

C Mo Gunz said...

He's this day and age's Marlboro Man!

Mo said...

very sad story...

Malkavian said...

Humans are not meant for long battles, and terrorist action. The psyche breaks and its hard for one to adapt into society

Rob said...

A sad story, I'm sorry to hear how it turned out, makes me feel sick that the same officials that denied him help are the same people who sent him to war.

VersionDouble said...

fantastic photo

Tibble said...

Very sad.

Baws said...

Elected leaders don't care about vets with PTSD it seems... sad to see after the sacrifice they gave.

Lhosreiff said...

He looks absolutely exhausted...poor guy.

thenitefalls said...

wow I'll never join the war ever, even more after reading this story. It's messed up how America can do that to their soldiers

Laughing Vault said...

awesome photo

Laughing Vault said...

poor guy

randomer said...

Terribly sad story, really hope things work out for him. Sucks what war does to people, I guess that's why nobody wins.

consuela bananahammoc said...

Nice picture!

DocStout said...

I'd never seen this photo, really impressed by it. I think I like it even better than the old classic cowboy.

ExoticBlogger said...

sick photo!

Triper said...

Photography looks nice, but i dont like malrboro :)

Electric Addict said...

ouch what a sad story :(

Wayward Disposition said...

This one is much better than the last. This picture actually tells a good story.

Venus said...

damn that photo is good. I haven´t see it before, thanks for posting.

Morde said...

He seems totally worn out, a sad story.

KrillKrones said...

Wow! Really cool photo, very interesting post.

G said...

wow awesome shot

John said...

What a story =/ That's sad.

Azoo said...

Politicians do not give a shit. They will do whatever is needed to get votes. It does not matter how many get hurt, so long as they get their votes...

Necroticism said...

And yeah, the backstory is kinda sad.

Admin said...

Well that was pretty killer. Sad story though.

Jacob said...

looks like he´s having fun! Join the military kids^^

The Game Store Guy said...

A classic photo, but I had no idea about the background. A very sad thing. I have a brother that just got back from the rangers after, and I quote, "having been blown up one too many times". :/

JaksonHunt said...

Poor guy :C

Living cheap said...

amazing picture!

Slamcakes said...

Why couldn't this be the picture prompt in standardized tests growing up? I could write a book using this picture as inspiration

lemoz said...

This is prob your best post yet lol good job!

princy gupta said...

what a blog...
+1 follower

Team Panda said...

its a bit sad.

elexerdelex said...

wow...

Reilly said...

Being a photographer always awakens the morals. When people are drowning, what do you do?
You take a photograph that's going to be in the newspapers and a very unique picture+profit or you'll throw your camera away and save them, losing your camera and money but with the right heart

My name is Maman. I'm one who likes all kinds of music. said...

quality stuff.

Biff Tanner said...

Yeah great pic though

Rorschach Redemption said...

Now sure how I feel about that photo. Engrossing image; disturbing reality.
It doesn't help that he looks like someone I know.

Bill Righteous said...

Think this is bad, should check out what the guys went through in World War 2.

Alexandra said...

very intense! Great photo! :-)

biboa said...

oh wow, really liking your blog! amazing shots

Eldir said...

They should just end the war ;/

Mike said...

awesome photo

Brock said...

Wow, the face of war close up, sad story

taio said...

impresionante

HiFi said...

It's sad because politicians will only care about wars when they have a personal stake in it. Once that passes, they move on to other things.

MRanthrope said...

downer...total downer =/

Dale said...

Wow, I forgot how long it's been..since 2004. Sad. :( And that's depressing about what happened with him and his family.

Dave said...

Thats an intense pic for sure.

CandleintheDark said...

I don't know how I missed this but this is incredible

Jack said...

Very powerful stuff!

pixel said...

wow, i had seen the photo, never heard the backstory though

Morgaine said...

For more of Luis Sinco's work, visit the LATimes (http://framework.latimes.com/search/Luis+Sinco).

IMO, his work is beyond what others do. Be sure to check out the Libya photos and the articles/blog entries he wrote during his time there.

Jay said...

@Morgaine: thanks! will definitely look for more of Sinco's work. :D

Anonymous said...

like it!

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