Alyssa Morin
Updated September 11, 2016 10:05 am
Flickr Creative Commons /

We’ve all seen the iconic kiss photo that was taken in Times Square, as people celebrated the end of World War II. A thrilled sailor kissed a nurse in the middle of New York City’s busiest streets and the rest is history.


The woman in the photo, Greta Zimmer Friedman, has passed away at the age of 92. Her son explained that his mother died on Thursday at a hospital in Richmond, Va. due to pneumonia, according to the New York Times.

Friedman had actually never met the man who kissed her in the classic photo. She was a 21–year–old dental assistant wearing a nurse’s uniform on Aug. 14, 1945, also known as V–J Day, the day the Japanese surrendered.

Walt Disney Studios /

Little did she know that she would take one of the most iconic pictures of all time.

The New York streets were filled with people after they heard the news that World War II was over. Everyone seemed to be celebrating a great victory, including George Mendonsa, who spotted Friedman in the street.

He spun her around, puckered up and planted a huge kiss on her.

New Line Cinema /

Joshua Friedman says his mother remembered it happening in an instant, according to Mashable. It was the first time the two had ever met.

During an interview with the Veterans History Project in 2005, Friedman recalled the moment she had just been kissed.

“It wasn’t that much of a kiss,” she said. “It was just somebody celebrating. It wasn’t a romantic event.”


The famed kiss has come under fire in recent years as being an incident of sexual harassment, but according to Joshua Friedman, his mother, despite being a big-time feminist, never held a grudge. In the New York Times, Friedman affirmed that while she understood the argument, she didn’t view it that way, and later became friends with the sailor.

The photograph, which is arguably one of the most famous pictures of the 20th century, was taken by renowned photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt. The black and white photo ran as a full page in Life magazine.