Her page at Contact with the "selected" image:
Ricky Flores' image, seen below, was used to illustrate an article in The Digital Journalist, titled America's Darkest Day by David Friend, which went online on Oct. 13, 2001; and on a National Press Photographers Association page, 'Witness To Tragedy,' which coincidentally also was posted online on Oct 13, 2001. His work never seems to have made it into his actual employer, The Journal News.
I find both of these photographer's work to be suspect because Flores has only this single image taken on 9/11 in the record, as available on Google, while Grinker has all of only two images, the flag-raising, and the image below, which was used as a home-page illustration for the year 2001 by her agency, Contact Press Images, on a page which made its first appearance online on Sep 03, 2004 according to archive.org.
(Too bad Fireman Balducci doesn't offer us a testimony. I'd be interested in what he has to say.)
The purpose of Flores' and Grinker's images, in my opinion, would be to buttress and support the truly iconic, but sadly fraudulent, work of Thomas Franklin, who was traveling around Ground Zero that day with the award-winning photographer James Nachwey, who somehow missed the shot.
Grinker's work helps us place the scene as taking place to the west of West Street, directly in front of WFC 2; however, in her second shot she is clearly on the second floor and Franklin says he took his shot from the street shooting upwards, so I suppose Grinker traveled to a higher floor to get the image of the firemen.
Contact Press Images says,
"Based in New York, Lori Grinker began making her way to the site of the destruction moments after the crash of the first plane. By the time she arrived both towers had collapsed and the entire area had been transformed into a smoldering field of ruins. From the second floor of the still standing World Financial Center, Grinker noticed a group of firemen hoisting an American flag while she was photographing the wreckage. The selected image has since become iconic, symbolizing resilience in the face of adversity."We can know this to be false to a high degree of certainty because of the numerous reports of a perimeter being established before this time by law enforcement. Even the privileged Franklin says he was almost arrested a half dozen times that day. It is unlikely if the uncredentialed Grinker made it into a damaged office building beside the collapsed World Trade Center towers to take all of two images. Her agency bio states:
"Lori Grinker was born in 1957 in Freeport, New York, USA. While still a student at Parsons School of Design, she began her photographic career documenting the rise of the 13-year old future heavyweight championship boxer Mike Tyson. She joined Contact Press Images in 1988. Since then, in addition to her reportage of events such as the destruction of the World Trade Center, she has delved into long-term book projects including The Invisible Thread: A Portrait of Jewish American Women (Jewish Publication Society), and most recently, Afterwar: Veterans from a World in Conflict (de.MO 2004), her 16-year project on veterans of the last century. She is based in New York City."
The NPPA article says Flores, like Grinker, was far away when the planes crashed:
"I was on the Bronx-Manhattan bridge crossing trying to get past cops who were redirecting traffic away from Manhattan when the first tower fell. I finally found one who let me pass and as the second building fell and overwhelming sense of despair and shock began to set in. Around Canal Street NYPD had already begun to setup some sort of perimeter to the site.But Flores makes explicit he was on the second floor, leaving Franklin to crawl into a low ditch somewhere:
I was able to park and find a way in. I remember the utter chaos around the perimeter, with a host of emergency vehicles making it's way down towards the World Trade Center. I also remember that past that point somewhere between that perimeter and the actual site that the streets were completely empty and silent and covered with this chalky white dust."
"When I took the photo of the firemen raising the flag in front of the World Financial Center from a second floor window, it felt like it was the bare glimmer from the rescue workers that they were beginning to get a grasp and a comprehension of what had taken place. I knew that what I saw was different from everything else that I saw that day, but if you had asked me if it was the most significant I would not have been a been able to give you an answer."
I guess not. In addition to David Friend's page, Ricky Flores has a page at The Digital Journalist called REFLECTIONS New York City, from August 2003, where even the photographer gets photographed. The piece unfortunately for Flores uses the Jayson Blair scandal as a literary device.
Another piece about Flores, in the Boricua News, called, Witness to Tragedy, from December 2001, would have appeared more professional had they spelled "Photograher," correctly.
Given the admittedly limited reach of Google research, as the public record now stands, it is absurd that these two were supposedly on the scene on 9/11 and only came away with these measly images, meant as a sort of validation of another low-rent screw-ball insider news photographer. Further damnation of the entire profession of "non-fiction" photography---as if we needed any more proof of their cupidity and guile. Phooey I say!
There is no angle or shot as composed in the Thomas Franklin picture. It is entirely a product of Photoshop. The same is true of the Grinker and Flores images. Manufactured frauds beyond a reasonable doubt.
On edit 1/4/09: Please see The "Suppressed" History of Thomas Franklin's "Instant" Symbol for further complications to the story, which only serve to strand the Lori & Ricky Show on the second floor of Number Two World Financial Center shooting at the dusty breeze.
In an article in the New Jersey News on October 2, 2001, Flag in noted photo flying on ship leading U.S. fleet, staff writer Elise Young writes,
Franklin was near the trade center's ruined Building Seven when he spotted Firefighters Dan McWilliams, George Johnson, and Billy Eisengrein raising the flag on a pole plucked from a yacht. The men had anchored the flagpole in rubble about 20 feet above West Street.She goes on to say, "McWilliams said he and other rescuers were frustrated after digging for six hours and finding no survivors." This is of course, completely bogus, as no search or rescue was undertaken until Building 7 collapsed at 5:30pm, and until the remains of Tower Two were blown 24 hours after that. No digging. No bucket brigades. I suppose these three firemen could be credited with abstaining from their fellow's massive, wholesale looting, which was what the firemen really did under cover of darkness.