Skip to content Corky Lee, 'unofficial Asian American photographer laureate,' dies from COVID-19

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A ABy Richard ChangNEW YORK (Reuters) – Corky Lee, a photojournalist who pushed for greater Asian American representation through his work over five decades, died on Wednesday in New York City due to complications from COVID-19.

Lee, 73, was admitted to Long Island Jewish Hospital in Forest Hills on Jan. 7, said Karlin Chan, a fellow community activist.

Lee, who joked that he was the “undisputed unofficial Asian American Photographer Laureate,” embarked on his quest while studying American history at Queens College in 1965.

Lee photographed protests against the 1982 murder of Vincent Chin, a young Chinese American in Michigan, by autoworkers who blamed Japan for the loss of U.S. auto jobs.

The Corky Lee Recovery Fundraiser, a Facebook page set up by friends for the Queens, New York, native, raised over $46,000 to help pay for his medical bills.

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