Sacramento Bee photographer Renee C. Byer was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for feature photography today for her photographs in “A Mother’s Journey.” The four-part series by writer Cynthia Hubert and Byer that appeared in The Bee last July.
A gallery of her photos and the series can be found at www.sacbee.com.
The newspaper’s description today, post-prize, follows.
Byer, 48, chronicled the dying days of 11-year-old Derek Madsen, who was battling cancer, and the anguish of his mother, Cyndie French, as she fought to save him.
The series has won a number of other national awards, including the Society of Professional Journalists’ 2006 Sigma Delta Chi Award for best feature photography and the World Understanding Award from Pictures of the Year International.
Byer is married to Bee photographer Paul Kitagaki Jr., himself a Pulitzer recipient.
The award is the second Pulitzer in two years for The Bee. Editorial writer Tom Philp won the prize for editorial writing in 2005 for his series urging the restoration of Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy Valley. It is the fifth Pulitzer overall for The Bee.
Byer joined The Bee in 2003, coming from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. She has been a news photographer and editor for more than 25 years.