Remembering Charles Tasnadi

Charlie Tasnadi, of the Associated Press, Ron Bennett , of United Press International, and Helen Thomas on Air Force One.
Charlie Tasnadi, of the Associated Press, Ron Bennett , of United Press International, and Helen Thomas on Air Force One.

It is with deep sadness that we announce the death of our dear friend and long-time colleague Charlie Tasnadi, who passed away the evening of January 10, 2008, while in hospice care in Washington.

As details are still be finalized, please monitor this page for additional information and funeral arrangements.

In 1951, Charlie Tasnadi and his sweetheart Maria fled Communist Hungary through treacherous minefields, barbed wire, and heavy snow. “That memory,” Charlie said, “really helped me put a better perspective on deadline pressures.”

Chivalry, professionalism, and selfless dedication were Tasnadi¹s hallmarks.. He carried these values from his first newspaper assignments in Caracas, Venezuela, to his work as a stringer for Time-Life, and through his notable, 32-year career with the Associated Press.

The epitome of a photojournalist and a gentleman, he documented seven White House administrations, (ending with Clinton) and traveled to Cuba more than 40 times, gaining extraordinary access to Fidel Castro and other Cuban officials.

As for recognition he received, Tasnadi had said, “Coming from Hungary I have often wondered what all these honors are about. People honor me just by allowing me to do my work.” This couldn’t have been truer than it was in 1989 when Tasnadi returned to Hungary for the first time after 38 years with President Bush in Air Force One. Once they landed, he hid his tears behind his camera, determined to get good pictures of the President.

In January of 1996, while working his last press conference before his retirement, he was truly honored again when President Clinton started a round of applause, thanking him for his great pictures and years of exemplary service.

In 1996 The White House News Photographers Association honored Charles Tasnadi with its award for Lifetime Achievement in photojournalism.

Related Links:

Some of Charlie’s iconic pictures are featured in the WHNPA member gallery.

The Associated Press has extensive coverage of Charles Tasnadi’s career. is carrying the AP obituary and a slideshow. (registration required)

“Tasnadi, storied AP photographer, Dies” by AP writer Randolph E. Schmid is also published on, accompanied by a 14 image slide show.

“Retired AP photojournalist Charles Tasnadi, 82, Dies in Washington” on NPPA.ORG

“A photojournalism legend dies.” Charles Apple, blog includes a tribute and several images by Charlie Tasnadi


TUESDAY 1/15/08 at NOON
St. Ann Church
4400 Wisconsin Ave. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20016
(202) 966-6288 ex. 10

The church is on the corner of Wisconsin Ave and Yuma.There will be a private internment following the funeral mass.

Flowers may be sent to the church, St. Ann and/or Contributions made in Charlie’s name to St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Memorial and Honor Program
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
501 St. Jude Place
Memphis, TN 38105

This is the link to print out the form:

This is a link for electronic online contributions:

Additional information will be posted as it becomes available.