Reporters Memorial in Bayeux


There are few memorials in the world dedicated to reporters. One exists in Arlington, Virginia and one exists in Bayeux, Normandy, the only one of its kind in Europe. Yesterday, May 2nd, the City of Bayeux’s mayor, Patrick Gomont inaugurated the memorial garden designed by architectural landscape artist, Samuel Craquelin. Reporters without Borders, based in Paris participated in organizing the inauguration ceremony.
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Photo by Chris Card Fuller ©2007

The white stone markers bordered with white flowers list the names of reporters from around the world who have been killed while trying to their job. Widows, parents, and colleagues of the deceased reporters came to Bayeux to keep the names and the work of their loved ones alive. And they also came to remember, to cry, and to share the simple stories of day-to-day life – like forgetting to take one’s keys to the airport – the inconsequential hassles of every day life that all of a sudden become the details that we hang onto so desperately to keep a loved one’s memory alive.

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Bayeux has added this lieu of remembrance – quite unlike the formal Commonwealth cemetery just across the street. Craquelin, the memorial garden designer said that when one mentions ‘memorial’, a rigid stationary monument comes to mind. He wanted to create a memorial that conveyed movement. The path along which the markers are placed meanders and the markers follow the path like seagulls floating in the wake of crashing waves.

May 2nd was a perfect day. They sky was cloudless. The Bayeux Cathedral discreetly remained in the background – a silent witness.
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Photo by Chris Card Fuller ©2007