Posted in Behind the News

Honoring 2 fallen AP journalists

, by Patrick Maks

The Associated Press honored on Wednesday two journalists who died because of their work for AP.

The name of former Chinese correspondent Y.C. Jao, who was executed by the Chinese government in 1951, was added to AP’s Wall of Honor at its New York headquarters, a memorial to AP journalists who have died on assignment since the news cooperative was founded in 1846.

AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt speaks during a ceremony to add two names to AP's Wall of Honor at New York headquarters, Dec. 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Chuck Zoeller)

Jao’s story came to AP’s attention in 2018 after the news agency received a letter from his nephew. Jao’s two oldest children, Rao Jian and Rao Jiping, traveled to New York from China to attend Wednesday’s ceremony.

Freelance photographer and video journalist Mohamed Ben Khalifa, who contributed hundreds of photos and scores of videos to AP, was also honored. He was killed in Tripoli, Libya, in January 2019 while covering fighting for AP.

“AP’s mission to inform the world comes at a steep price,” AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt said at the ceremony.

Children of former AP journalist Y.C. Jao, Rao Jian, left, and Rao Jiping bow after unveiling their father's name on AP's Wall of Honor in New York, Dec. 11, 2019. At right are AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt, third from right, and AP Executive Editor Sally Buzbee, second from right. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

Jao and Ben Khalifa join 35 journalists who have given their lives for AP.

“We mourn them all and consider their passing an enduring loss for the whole AP family,” said Pruitt. "We pledge to never forget them. They inspire us. With this wall we honor them and keep their memories alive.”

Read the AP news story.