Friday, December 15, 2017
News Roundup

All Eyes Gallery, Cherie Diez's favorite photos of 2016

Each year, Times photographers choose their favorite photos from the past 12 months. These are from Cherie Diez.

Cherie Diez

Michele Jonchuck, grandmother of Phoebe Jonchuck, cuddles with Phoebe's babydoll Lucy on what would have been Phoebe's 6th birthday, August 22, 2015. Each night she tucks Lucy in bed just like she did when Phoebe was alive.

Cherie Diez

Three days after surviving the Pulse nightclub massacre by hiding in a dressing room, performer Angelica Sanchez collects donations for Pulse victims and employees after Sanchez's emotional lip-sync performance of Jennifer Hudson's "Bring Back the Music" in a drag show fundraiser for Pulse victims and employees at the Parliament House Resort in Orlando early September 15, 2016.

Cherie Diez

One month to the day after the deadliest mass shooting in American history, Pulse employee Samantha Stone, left, and David "Brock" Cornelius visit the Pulse memorial in the parking lot of the shuttered Orlando nightclub with Cornelius' dog, Meiling, July, 12, 2016. Cornelius, who lives next door to Pulse, had been walking Meiling around the site daily. But this was Stone's first visit to her former workplace since the shooting. Stone was working the front register when the gunfire erupted and initially assumed it was the sound system malfunctioning. She decided to run only after a body fell through a beaded entryway. Cornelius wasn't at home but he texted Samantha his garage code so she and several other friends could take cover in his condo. Both Stone and Cornelius lost several close friends in the massacre. Cornelius channeled his grief into designing and creating a permanent online memorial to the victims: 1heart1pulse.com.

Cherie Diez

"God Bless America" is sung by the crowd at the Bay Pines VA Healthcare System's annual Veteran's Day Ceremony on the CW Bill Young VA Medical Center Campus.

Cherie Diez

Law enforcement atop the Tampa Museum of Art watch the Hillary Clinton early vote rally in Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park in downtown Tampa, October 26, 2016.

Cherie Diez

As Lee Greenwood's "God Bless the USA" plays through the speakers, Donald J Trump enters his Tampa rally and hugs the American Flag at the Midflorida Credit Union Amphitheater, October 24, 2016.

Cherie Diez

Hillary Clinton enters her early vote rally in the Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park in downtown Tampa, October 26, 2016.

Cherie Diez

Army veteran Danny Green, 55, of Tampa takes a selfie as President Bill Clinton stumps for Hillary Clinton, October 11, 2016 at the Safety Harbor Community Center.

Cherie Diez

Donald J. Trump leaves his rally at the Sheltair Hangar at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport, Lakeland, FL, October 12, 2016.

Times Archive

Cherie Diez is a third generation Tampa native with turn-of-the-century family roots going back to Sicily and Spain. She's been a photographer at the Times since graduating from the University of South Florida, immersing herself in numerous documentary projects and covering social issues including child welfare, life in New York City after 9/11 and a year in the life of an Alzheimer's support group.

As a narrative photojournalist and video producer, she uses the camera to capture the everyday fleeting moments that reveal so much about a life and our world.

This past year she collaborated with writer Lane DeGregory on the "The Long Fall of Phoebe Jonchuck", the aftermath of the Pulse nightclub shooting and the last delivery of a retiring Tampa OBGYN. Diez also contributed to the Tampa Bay Times local coverage of the presidential election.

Diez's photographs of Juniper French's first year of life as a micro-premie born at 23 weeks, originally published in the Tampa Bay Times, have been republished in the 2016 book, "Juniper: The Girl Who Was Born To Soon", a memoir written by Kelley Benham French and Thomas French about their premature daughter.

In past stories Diez has followed a local student to the Broadway stage and documented the idea of sin with the reopening of Bourbon Street after Hurricane Katrina. She's followed pit bulls to their deaths and an exorcist on her wedding day.

In 1997 Diez collaborated with writer Thomas French to produce the "Angels and Demons" story about the murder of an Ohio mother and her two teen daughters killed in Tampa Bay while on vacation. The story earned French the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing.

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