22 Sep 2014 14:51
The plane came to a rough landing as it skidded to a stop on the decaying runway. Upon exiting passengers were met with an army of people rushing to take our temperature with thermometers shaped like guns aimed at our heads. I would soon come to realize these thermometers as a frightening reminder that if the number read 101.5 Fahrenheit or higher, it might as well be a real gun they were placing to my head. Washing my hands with chlorine, I proceeded through the cacophony of customs where my passport was quickly stamped and I was sent on my way. Over the next week I would come face to face with Ebola; photographing the sick, dead and every stage of the virus in between. Realizing the severity of this epidemic that sets a country back after steadily making gains from the destruction caused by civil war from 1989-2003.
In the West Point neighborhood of Monrovia and nearby towns and villages, everyday life has nearly come to a halt as aid workers try to get ahead of the disease, setting up testing and washing stations, and as authorities try to enforce quarantines set up to prevent the disease from spreading to other parts of Monrovia.