The New Zealand Herald editor says he’s sorry he added to the grief of a family of a fallen Israeli soldier by mistakenly publishing a picture of a dead reality TV star.
Monday’s edition of the NZ Herald featured a front page story on Kiwi-born Staff Sergeant Guy Boyland, 21, who was killed in Gaza.
But instead of a photo of St Sgt Boyland, the paper ran a large head-and-shoulder shot of the late Jackass star Ryan Dunn under the headline “Kiwi killed in Gaza”.
The photo – along with another incorrect picture – were taken from St Sgt Boyland’s profile pictures on his Facebook page.
NZ Herald editor Shayne Currie said he and APN chief executive Jane Hastings had personally apologised to St Sgt Boyland’s family.
“The family members have been remarkably forgiving, particularly in the circumstances,” he wrote in a statement published on the paper’s site.
“I have apologised for adding to their grief.”
Currie admitted staff had sourced the images from St Sgt’s Facebook page and said he’s reviewing what procedures were followed before it was published.
“I would like to reiterate how seriously we are taking this error and apologise again.
“I would also like to apologise to our readers – the public trust us to get it right and we must make sure that this does not happen again.”
A photo of Dunn also featured prominently on NZ Herald’s website, but was switched for a photo of St Sgt Boyland in army gear smoking a cigarette which has now been taken down.
Dunn, 34, died in 2011 after driving his Porsche at speeds over 200km/h in Pennsylvania.