Nick Ut currently resides in Los Angeles, California and has worked as an AP photographer for more than 50 years. He spent almost 10 years covering the Vietnam War, starting his work at the age of 16, and is best-known for his June 8, 1972 Pulitzer Prize-winning photo of children fleeing from a napalm bombing during the war.
Nick Ut's recount of the napalm photo:
"After the napalm bomb dropped, I told myself 'I hope there's no one in the village.' And in about three minutes, I saw some people running: one woman wounded under her leg, another mother running with her children, and another grandmother carrying a one-year-old boy in her arms. The boy died right in front of many news media cameras. I thought these photos were the so powerful. Many photographers took so many pictures of the dead boy that they all ran out of film in their cameras.
I had four cameras: two Nikons F and two Leicas, a M2 and M3. I looked back at the black smoke at Pagoda on black smog and I saw a little naked girl running at us. I took a picture of Kim Phuc with her open arms running with her brother, Tam Phuc, and her family. She kept running passed us and yelling: 'I'm dying, I'm dying! Too Hot, Too Hot!' In Vietnamese, she screamed 'Nong Qua, Nong Qua, Nong Qua.' As she kept running, I saw her body burnt so badly. I thought she would die. I took a few pictures and then stopped. I put my camera on the ground of Highway 1 and I helped her."
Kim Phuc and her family were transported to the Cu Chi Hospital by Nick Ut and his driver. Ut and Phuc, who now resides in Canada, still remain in contact to this day. Phuc refers to Ut as "Uncle Nick."
Nick Ut and Kim Phuc
In 1975, after the Vietnam War ended, Ut continued his work with AP and moved to Los Angeles and then to Tokyo, Japan for two years to cover the war zone in North and South Korea. After two years, he returned to Los Angeles and while in southern California has covered everything from the Rodney King riots to the O.J. Simpson case to Hollywood celebrities.