Unsung Heroes


Jaipur, India, May, 2008

World Health day is coming up in early April,  and it seems like a good time to shine a light on health workers of the world,  the unsung heroes who run toward disasters when everyone else is running away.


Uganda, 2001

These are the people who deliver babies, comfort the dying, treat the sick, and put themselves in harm’s way.
Health workers risk their lives when they treat people with drug-resistant TB, Ebola, Marburg, and injured people in war zones. They refuse to give up even when it looks like all hope is lost.


New York City, USA, 2005



Thai Nguyen province, Vietnam, 2007


Uganda, 2001


Russia, 2009


Kandahar, Afghanistan, 1985



Helsinki, Finland, April, 2008

I have been privileged to observe many nurses, doctors, hospice caretakers, first aid teams, rehabilitation centers, and emergency personnel at work over the years.


New York City, September 11, 2001

Here are a few of those heroes.

35 Responses to “Unsung Heroes”

  1. Your art? It’s simple: straight to the heart.

  2. “A picture is worth a thousand words”

    Your blogs are a proof of this statement. Truly inspiring. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Hi Steve, I really liked this post and how it depicts heroes in different parts of the world. I am traveling around Southeast Asia now, I’m in Penang, Malaysia, and heard about your exhibition in KL, but too late! I wish I could have seen it. I met you in Buenos Aires for your exhibition at CC Borges and told you about my trip, now it’s finally happening, I’m here! I’m enjoying Malaysia a lot. Are you having any other exhibitions here in SE Asia? Or do you think you’ll be traveling here?
    I wish you the best, thanks for sharing your art with the world.


  4. Luca Boraso Says:

    Your photo’s make me cry smiling!! You’re giving us a lot of incredible images!

  5. Thanks Steve for reminding us we have wonderful people, who’s name we might not even know, all around us!

    Brian Carey

  6. I’m from Spain. My daugther and her father has been in NY in Sep 11. She was 11 years old then. They were guest in front of the towers, in Hilton Millenium hotel, but I didn’t think that and I couldn’t speak whit them until three days later. They were well. Bad days, very bad days…
    Congratulation for yours photos, you are a master.

  7. I just came back from seeing your gallery in Seoul, Korea.
    I am amazed and in awe of your photography. The experience in seeing
    the depth, layers, emotion, environments, and composition live face to face with large crisp blown up photography was amazing.

    I love your work and I am a thankful I got to see your works up close.
    It was an unbelievable experience.

    Keep up the great great great work.

  8. […] Unsung Heroes « Steve McCurry's Blog […]

  9. Wonderful timing…..thanks for sharing.

  10. olivier borson Says:

    Hi, Steve,
    I love these photos, they are so beautiful and so expressive. I can feel (see) the sensitivity, the love, the pain, and the greatness of the soul of these people touch by the dramas of the everyday life, and through them your😉

  11. Great pictures!! And many thnxs when you i was in Holland! I have much learn of you’re prestation… Because of you i go to college of photography in Apeldoorn and i wish i make as much great pictures!!😉 Greets sander

  12. Carmz Lopez Says:

    Thank you.

    As a nurse, I believe it is my calling to stay rather than leave, for it is in healing that we find ourselves, it is in being of service that we find meaning in life.

  13. This post is a gift. It is so important to call to mind unsung heroes such as these–not all things worth looking at involve excitement and drama and some overplanned message, some things, things like these health workers, though lovely photos as they may be, are worth looking at to remind us of our humanity, and our worldwide human family. Many thanks!

  14. Horea Feier Says:

    Beautiful photos Steve,

    Capturing the fleeting moment/gesture of tenderness, compassion or despair. Working with people in distress can be very difficult but also extremely rewarding (I write that as a healthcare professional)

  15. Your photographs are inspiring! I aspire to be a photographer, how did you get started? Did you always want to become a photographer? Did you attend an art school or study photography and other art? Thank you so much for your photographs! They have taken me around the world through the eyes of those who feel and experience the same emotions that I see and feel every day, it makes other cultures so much more relatable!

  16. Wonderful…..thanks for reminding me to be grateful!

  17. Nice pictures steve!! I like the doctor and the child!!

  18. I love your work. Would you mind if I feature you as photographer of the week on my blog next week?


  19. Unbelievable post … each one it’s own amazing story, it’s own amazing world. Beautiful work, as always. I am so grateful you have a blog!

  20. Spend my time in hospitals for one year and a half to accompany someone close (explanation on the link on my About page if interested – it’s also the reason why i dived into photo) and i feel greatly touched by your images (always). I follow your photoblog for long but never dared letting a comment. Done now😉 Thank you for the way you see; share the world, Steve.

  21. Ellos lo merecen, gracias por tus fotos.

  22. This a remarkable series Steve!….may be about other heroes we didn’t see?

    with warm regards,

    Jos Runarka

  23. Hi Steve,
    Touching shots.
    I always find that there is something in your photograph which touches the most sensitive portion of our heart.
    This reveals some unexplored areas where we know very little.

  24. You are amazing Steve. These images are very moving.

  25. Thanks for sharing this.

  26. littl3monk Says:

    I love the first photo, it look great in color:)

  27. Excelente, gracias por compartirlo

  28. Heather Says:

    Beautiful images that touch heart and soul.

  29. Hi, I’m new to your blog. Hope you don’t mind that I’ve followed you. I have always been awed by how your pictures say so much more than words can convey.

    Impressed by the sensitivity in these pictures. It feels good to be reminded that there heroes still exist, and that one doesn’t need super powers to be one.

  30. Great thoughts Steve,


  31. A very poignant piece to read as I am by my dying mother’s bedside. Hopspice workers are a wonder to me. Incredibly beautiful work that they do.

  32. aswirly Says:

    It is a beautiful thing when people self sacrificingly show love to others. It is beautiful to see these heroes.

  33. As usual capturing the soul of a photo.


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