Photo stirs hearts, drives people to help

By: Tim Johnston Email
By: Tim Johnston Email

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Capturing the perfect moment on camera is a bit tougher than simply pointing and shooting.

"Moments are fleeting," explained freelance photojournalist Jonathan Palmer, of Lexington, "Having the right moment is pretty important and pretty exciting."

For Palmer, it's more of finding a story to tell and his picture of Figo, the K9 paying respects to his fallen partner Jason Ellis, speaks more than a thousand words.

"I look for moments, I look for story telling images."

The photo of Figo has gone viral worldwide, but for the man behind the camera it was a moment he barely began to understand.

"The moment was there and I didn't realize at the time. When you're photographing you don't know the impact a photo may have," he described.

Still the powerful picture has stirred the hearts of many.

"I don't think you can be human and not be affected by that photo. I literally cried," said Miche Branscum, of Anderson County, and after she dried her eyes she knew she had to do something!

"We just want to help the family," she stated.

The group is called "Friends of Figo" and it's so new they don't even have a photo up yet.

"We're trying to put together a fundraiser so that the family can take care of Figo and not to have so much as to pay for a morsel."

"Never in a million years would I think that a photo that I took would have such an impact on so many people," admitted Palmer, "But that great moment of the dog with the casket really sealed it for me, that's the reason why I chose it when I was editing the photos."

It's one beautiful moment that came from a tragedy, but it will continue to tell this story.

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