It can take years to master the many photographic techniques to take stunning, professional photographs, but some famous and historical photos are merely the result of being in the right place at the right time. Many significant moments in history are known by a single image, and this pattern has become more prevalent with the rise of internet sharing and social media. Check out these ten incredible photographs that were taken moments before tragedy struck and captured the calm before the storm.
Malaysian Airlines Flight 17
This flight, known as MH17, was scheduled to fly from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur on July 14, 2014, but never made it after being shot down over eastern Ukraine. Whether it was the Ukrainian government after misidentifying a plane, or pro-Russia forces equipped with weaponry that can bring down a plane, will probably remain unknown. At the time, the region in which the plane was shot down was contested between the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists who wanted to have the area under Russian control. Eventually, the Russian military moved in and now occupies an area within Ukrainian territory. This conflict is still ongoing. This photograph shows a mother and daughter on the flight, and this picture was recovered from the wreckage of flight MH17. This photo was presumably taken by the father of the young girl. Unfortunately, all 283 passengers and 15 crew members died when the plane crashed after a 3 to 4-minute fall from the sky.
John Lennon And His Eventual Killer
John Lennon was an English musician who co-founded the most commercially successful and influential band in history, The Beatles. In his late 30s, Lennon became more of an activist and pacifist than an active musician and based himself in Manhattan, New York City. This shocking photograph shows John Lennon's killer having an album signed by the artist earlier in the day. This picture was taken in the same place where Lennon would eventually meet his untimely death just hours later. The killer's name is Mark David Chapman who was born in Texas and remains in prison for the murder. At around 10:50 PM on December 8, 1980, Chapman shot Lennon five times in the center of his back after hanging around outside his apartment complex. The gunshot wounds were very damaging, and Lennon was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.