You know what’s one of the most rewarding things to see as a photographer? When you take a photo of someone & 17 ½ years later… They still have it, they still proudly show it and they’ve never cropped it or altered it with some weird filter… I met Dr. Ike Ahmed somewhere in between April 27th-May 1st, 2001 at the ASCRS Convention in San Diego, CA. He was a young doctor that had just won an award and I remember that he was one of the people I was supposed to photograph. Later on that afternoon, I see him in the hallway at the convention center and I remember approaching him and offering to take a photo – just a quick headshot to remember the day. I kind’a figured this was an important event in his young life so I should get a proper photo. This was my very first convention I ever photographed for Eyeworld (Thank you Don Long for having faith in me back then!). I was a rookie photographer at the beginning of my career. Then on Saturday, April 18th, 2015 – I was again working for Eyeworld after so many years and Dr. Ahmed came in. I was filming the doctor interviews that day. He walked into the room like the frickin’ rockstar that he is and yet he humbly introduced himself. He’s seems bigger than life, but still manages to be SO approachable. He walks up to me and says, “Hi I’m Ike Ahmed!” I smile and I say, “Yeah, I know! We’ve met before!” He says, “We have?” I said, “Yes! In 2001 here in San Diego!” Right then, his eyes light up and he says, “You took a photo of me! In the hallway!” ☺ Yup, I sure did! And he proceeded to SHOW me the photo that was on his phone. How incredible is that? It meant the world to me that he still had it after all these years. A year later I saw him in New Orleans, just out in the street - we drove by and I just yell his name out of the car window. He is always happy to say hello and I think that’s pretty cool. The last time I saw him was recently in Chicago and that’s where I got this photo. I love it that it’s the original shot and a current shot all rolled into one. I am humbled that people keep such images after so many years. It’s even more meaningful that it hasn’t been altered in any way… I love that more than I can express.