The information you forwarded to me about Ansel is unfortunately not
- Ansel had open heart bypass surgery and a heart valve replacement
on February 14, 1979 - valentine's Day (an appropriate day for heart
surgery don't you think!). Ansel passed away on April 22, 1984 -
more than five years following his heart surgery.
- Ansel was in deteriorating health for a number of months prior to his death.
- I have never heard anything about Ansel indicating he wished he had
never had his heart surgery. During the time that I worked for him
full time (from 1979 to 1982), he had nothing but positive comments
- Ansel did request that his remains be examined for any evidence of
harm from photographic chemicals. Pathology was done locally and at
the CDC on some of Ansel's remains. There was no evidence of any
adverse health issues from photographic chemicals. However, it was
clearly stated by various individuals that studied Ansel's remains
that it would be highly unlikely there would be any direct evidence
of adverse effects from photographic chemicals. So, in a nutshell,
nothing was really learned.
I hope this clarifies a little bit about the end of Ansel's life. I
had lunch with him two days before he passed away. He had just
returned from the doctor, and was definitely feeling very tired. It
was however shocking when he was gone in a couple of days. Ansel had
a great vitality and passion for life. His love of photography was
contagious and, as you know, his teaching was inspiring.