Image PHOTO: Si-e-H

Erica Krauß  -Germany´s senior photographer has died at the age of 96.

She has photo-portrayed

Michail Gorbatschow, Helmut Kohl and Jassir Arafat. According to Mitteldeutsche Zeitung in 1965 it was Erica Krauß accompagnying young Queen Königin Elizabeth II., followed by more royals and prominent people: Charles de Gaulle, Bill Clinton, Nikita Chruschtschow as well as Wladimir Putin, Hamburg Morgenpost is writing:

„Aber es gab einen Staatsbesuch, von dem sie immer wieder erzählte. Das war 1967. Denn da stand sie in erster Reihe und bekam die Eier ab, die eigentlich für Reza Pahlevi und seine Frau Farah Diba gedacht waren. Tags zuvor war in Berlin der Student Benno Ohnesorg bei einer Anti-Schah-Demo erschossen worden.“

http://www.mopo.de/nachrichten/erinnerung-an-erika-krauss-mit-den-maechtigen-auf-du-und-du,5067140,23535888.html

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“It has been one reception – according to Mopo – she is said to have impressed her most: it happened in the year 1967 when she was hit by those eggs that should have hit Shah Reza Pahlevi und his wife Farah Diba. The very day befor student Benno Ohnesorg has been shot at an anti-shah demonstration taking place in Berlin.“

But maybe this is a legend. I met her three times – but unfortunately we never had the chance to talk.

As an intern as young foto-reporter for Bergedorfer Zeitung during my A levels, shortly befor I was accepted as one of 40 further students of journalism at the university of Hamburg,

I saw her in action at Hamburg town hall. Me being there being proudly told by a reporter colleague:

“oh, this is famous Erica Krauß. She has back bone”

– that´s the English expression for Rückgrat;

though literally speaking the word can be translated as well as re-incarnation as having [almost] died and having returned (ash to ash, dust to dust, bone to bone). The colleague said that during the „Bleierne Zeit“, the days of hunting down terrorists and those who were alleged ones she firmly stood side a side to those seaking help, no matter what officials and career seeking editors were saying. I was told that this almost broke her neck and from this time onwards she was mainly working from Hamburg. Whether deliberately or forced upon I never had the opportunity to get to know first hand. But I remembered the words of the reporter when crossing her way in a bus in a night in Hamburg in 2007, when similiar has happened to me. Last week I photographed for free lance offerings of a photo feature on new studies on plants and for my home page – coming accross the photo above, as well as an ant at the Hugh Green Street close to broadcast station NDR carrying a dead colleague ant. In the evening I took part in a gathering of the German journalists association djv. At that time I didn´t know of the death of Erica Krauß

whose death was reported on sunday.

BY

susanne.haerpfer@bits.de