The Tully Free Speech Award, given annually by Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications, honors “journalists who have persevered in the face of threats and other obstacles.” In the case of longtime AP Middle East correspondent Kathy Gannon (pictured), the most prominent threat she face was from an unprovoked April 2014 attack in Khost, Afghanistan. While Gannon survived the gunfire, her AP colleague Anja Niedringhaus was killed.
From Gannon’s recent conversation with Syracuse Media Group editorial leader Marie Morelli:
“I just started back to work at the beginning of this year … I just have problems with my left hand. I really don’t have a lot of function with it because I was hit with six bullets. Three almost severed my left hand and blew an 8-inch hole in my left forearm, so I had to have a bone transplant … Two bullets hit my right hand in different places and another shattered my right shoulder blade and punctured my lung.”
“So I’ve been healing at different rates for different parts of my body … I am able to get some movement. I have three fingers that work very well. So I’m very able to type and do my work.”
Gannon will be presented with the award and a $2,500 cash prize tonight by Tully Center for Free Speech director Roy Gutterman. A moderated discussion will follow, with portions to be shared on Twitter via the hashtag #TullyAward.
Image courtesy: syr.edu