Costa Rica News – On Monday, the world lost one of our best journalists of all time, Matthew Power. He is most well known in Costa Rica for a piece he wrote about a hero, Jairo Mora Sandoval, who was a sea turtle activist murdered while trying to protect turtles. When Matt heard the story, he got a plane and approached the story fearlessly and compassionately, as was his style.
Matt wrote criticisms, essays, and reports about events in far off places. He contributed to Outside, Harper’s Magazine, Wired, GQ, The New York Times, National Geographic, The Atavist, and Slate. He always treated the subjects of his stories with respect.
His body of work contained interesting tales, such as that of a Philippine shantytown surviving off a trash pile. Another time, he wrote about an experience in which he climbed a tree dressed as a sunflower, to protest Giuliani. “The kind of stories I’ve gotten to do have involved fulfilling my childhood fantasies of having an adventurous life. Even though I don’t make a ton of money doing it, I’ve never felt like I was missing out on something,” Power said in 2013.
At the young age of 39, Power died while in Uganda for a weeklong trip. He was there to accompany a British man, Levinson Wood, who was trying to walk the entire length of the Nile River. The police in Uganda report that Matt collapsed and died quickly.
The story he was working on was for Men’s Journal, who have since published that it is believed he died of heatstroke, though an autopsy will be done in Kampala to confirm if that’s true. “On Monday, Matt fell ill, lost consciousness, and died a few hours later,” a witness said.