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National Geographic features photo taken at Mary Bridge Children's Hospital

Posted on Aug. 1, 2014 ( comments)

Photo by Jesse Michener

Jesse Michener is a Tacoma native and third generation photographer. She's also a mother of three. 

At age 7, her daughter, Violet, spiked a fever of 106. Violet was vomiting and hallucinating. Michener dialed 911. 

Before getting in the ambulance with her daughter, Michener grabbed one thing.

"I grabbed my camera to take photos to help her process the experience," Michener said.

Violet was at MultiCare Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital for a week. With her daughter's permission, Michener documented Violet's stay in photos. 

That was seven years ago. A photo from Violet's stay in 2007 was just featured in National Geographic's Your Shot photo forum.

The photo was one of 39 chosen out of 21,000 submissions.

The caption reads: "They were about to take her down the hall to surgery and she was terrified. After a week in the hospital, she was tired of just about everything but her bear."

The theme, How Close Can You Get?, described by National Geographic photographer Ed Kashi on the contest page:

"It’s not just about physical proximity when I talk about getting close in your photographs. It’s about capturing a feeling, mood, emotion, sense of intimacy. It’s that quality in a photograph that gives the viewer a feeling of being there, being in the scene, a silent, unseen observer."

Michener is a professional photographer and had hundreds of photos from her work to choose from. For this submission, she decided to choose from her own experiences. 

"Our stay at Mary Bridge was a difficult time," Michener said. "But the care was amazing. It was also a really special time."

Michener feels a strong connection to Mary Bridge and says she wants people to feel connected with the photo. 

"Even amid all of that, she’s a beautiful girl surrounded by love and surrounded by good care."

View Michener’s photo in the How Close Can You Get? album. 
Posted in: General Vitals | News

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Jen Rittenhouse Jen Rittenhouse
Jen is our social media specialist. She writes stories that connect people with hospitals, health care and each other. You can reach her at

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