The Final Days

8 JULY 1979 — A Sandinista fighter exudes confidence as he rides in the back of a pickup truck through the streets of the city of Esteli. The scene of ferocious fighting, the city at this point is largely controlled by the rebels. Much of the northern sector of Nicaragua also is under Sandinista control as the dictatorship’s grip on the country weakens.

The image making and storytelling skills I acquired during this conflict are the foundation of my role today as backpack journalist. As we mark the 30th anniversary of the Sandinista Revolution, I’m posting scans of some of the original images I made for UPI during that war, and explaining their significance. I do this in recognition and gratitude to the country and people who have given me so much. Thank you.