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Cal Olson, longtime employee of The Forum who took iconic 1957 tornado photo, dies

DULUTH, Minn. - Cal Olson, a former Forum managing editor who took an iconic photograph of a man carrying a lifeless child following the 1957 Fargo tornado, died today at age 84.

Famous photo
One of the Six: With the body of 5-year-old Jeanette Irene Munson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Gerald Munson, tenderly cradled in his arms, Richard Shaw, 21, stumbled through wreckage of the tornado as he was photographed by the Fargo Forum Photographer Cal Olson. Jeanette was one of six Munson children killed by the twister. Shaw, 902 26th St. N., was a neighbor of the Munson family. Photo by Cal Olson / The Forum

DULUTH, Minn. - Cal Olson, a former Forum managing editor who took an iconic photograph of a man carrying a lifeless child following the 1957 Fargo tornado, died today at age 84.

Olson fell Wednesday at his cabin on Big Island Lake in Itasca County, Minnesota, striking his head. Unconscious, he was taken to Bigfork Valley Hospital, 11 miles away, and later flown by air ambulance to St. Mary's Medical Center in Duluth, where he died this morning.

Olson was part of The Forum staff that was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1957 for its coverage of the deadly tornado.

He joined The Forum staff in 1950 as a reporter and photographer, and was named photo chief in 1957. He later became city editor and, in 1972, managing editor.

He left The Forum in 1978, when he became editor of the Sioux City (Iowa) Journal. He retired 19 years ago.

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Funeral arrangements are pending. For more details, read Friday's Forum.

Famous photo
Cal Olson

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