NEWS NEWS AND MORE NEWS I am going to get all of my memories down, before I forget what I remember!. . . . quote from Stanley Forman

22Nov/123

Kirby Perkins an A+ Type of Guy

Kirby, 1990s,
Carol Fatta photo

For most peo­ple life is short no mat­ter how long you live. Hope­fully, along the way you meet cer­tain peo­ple who make your life bet­ter and will always remain in your memories.

I first met Kirby in 1978 when I was sit­ting at home with a cast up to my butt after hav­ing my Achilles ten­don reat­tached from a rac­quet­ball injury. The best man at my wed­ding, John Premack, brought him by my Roslin­dale apart­ment while check­ing in on me.  I remem­ber Kirby telling me a few years later he saw this fat guy walk­ing around on crutches and won­dered how I could have ever won two Pulitzers.

Kirby began as a “lumper,” which meant work­ing with the pho­tog­ra­phers and car­ry­ing their tri­pod and lights, basi­cally the photographer’s bitch.  He didn’t mind as he had big plans for him­self.  He was just work­ing his way around to the front of the cam­era and he went onto become one of Boston’s pre­mier reporters.  I began work­ing with him in 1983, when I switched from the news­pa­per to TV news.

Kirby became one of my favorite reporters to work with along Martha Rad­datz (for­merly Bradlee), Susan Wor­nick, and Jack Harper. There have been many oth­ers I enjoyed work­ing with but if forced to choose those 4 were my favorites. Kirby was espe­cially fun as he was smart and always will­ing to go with dis­cov­ery as dis­cov­ery is what made him as good as it got.

Although he did not like spot news the way I do, he learned to go with the flow.  One day we were in Med­ford on a story when I heard on the scan­ner a child was shot in Lynn. The last place Kirby wanted to go to would be this story but he sucked it up and did a great job.

Another time when we were look­ing for some­thing to cover we ended up in Revere for sev­eral hours as an armed man was bar­ri­caded behind a door in an apart­ment build­ing.  Those were the days when I knew most of the Revere cops and Kirby and I were on the 3rd floor just out­side of the apart­ment where nego­ti­a­tions went on. My cam­era bat­ter­ies did not last long and Kirby had to keep going down from the third floor to my car and get fresh bat­ter­ies and tapes for me.  He kept a straight face and ended up doing about a 4-minute piece of the inci­dent. In the end Cap­tain Bill Gan­non got onto the man’s apart­ment from an out­side deck by climb­ing from one apart­ment to the next and charg­ing into the apart­ment and cap­tur­ing the man.  The sus­pect had a rifle, which could have taken us all out. The piece sang and was com­pelling from begin­ning to end.

Then there was the time Kirby had kid­ney stones and he researched pro­ce­dures for treat­ment and we found our­selves with him in a tub of water at the MGH get­ting sonic blasts into his body while I filmed it all. Kirby was shy so get­ting in and out on cam­era in his bathing suit was prob­a­bly harder to do then bare the pain of the stones.

He was so shy and when we would be in an ele­va­tor in a build­ing I would go to work and intro­duce him to all the peo­ple in the ele­va­tor. Boy, did he hate that but I loved doing it.

He loved pol­i­tics and espe­cially loved going to Boston City Hall where he cov­ered 3 May­ors of Boston (I have cov­ered 4 as John Collins was still in office when I started).

He used the video of Kevin White run­ning across the Boston Com­mon so often it wore out the emul­sion of the tape.

When Ray Flynn was resign­ing as Mayor to become Ambas­sador to the Vat­i­can he stood on City Hall Plaza and said in his live shot “Elvis has left the build­ing!”  Oh, the bosses did not like that one.Flynn leav­ing office wasn’t a bad thing for his favorite Mayor, Mayor For­ever, Tom Menino, with whom he had a spe­cial rela­tion­ship. Dur­ing one awful win­ter in the early 90s when peo­ple could not get out of their houses or drive down the streets of Boston we did a story on snow plow­ing in the City.  It was the year the Globe com­pared the snow level to a Celtics bas­ket­ball player’s height when mea­sur­ing the inches of snow.  We went to the Mayor’s home area in Readville and Kirby climbed up to the top of at least a 15-foot snow pile and did his stand-up.  We then went to City hall to ask Mayor Menino what grade does the Mayor think he got that win­ter on clear­ing the streets of Boston.  Mayor Menino looked at Kirby and gave his very hum­ble opin­ion, “A minus,” with his great big smile.

In his own words he dared to call Dap­per O’Neil a racist and to call Whacko Hur­ley, the St. Patrick’s Day Parade Czar, a Whacko.  Don’t think Dap­per wouldn’t call him out every time he saw him after that, yelling “Hey Perkins” in his very loud obnox­ious voice! Kirby smiled and ignored him.

When I was on my pop­corn binge (one big bag a day) he would occa­sional buy me one just so he could poke fun at me. One day he went into a cof­fee shop to get him­self a bev­er­age and when he came back I had already fin­ished the bag of pop­corn.  He could not believe I could have eaten this bag so quickly so I told him I spilled it by mis­take. He believed me, I think. From then I was known as the pop­corn man to his daugh­ter Alexis.

Deep down, he was really a West Coast hip­pie from the ‘60s. He loved to tell peo­ple how he lived in his Volk­swa­gen bus while going to school at UCLA.  Boy, did he hate snow­storms and cold weather, but he loved the fact that snow­storms meant he could wear his col­lege sweat­shirt. His win­ter gloves came out as soon as the leaves began falling.  Col­ored leaves meant warmer clothes for Kirby.

His father in-law Andy Rooney, a long time holder of New York Giants sea­son tick­ets, would invite Kirby to a game every year and every year Kirby would dread how cold he was going to be. I took him to Hilton’s Tent City where he bought the warmest boots he could find but of course he left them home when he drove down to New York for the game.

He used to carry cash all the time going to the bank on Monday’s and fill­ing his wal­let with what he needed.  You must remem­ber it was already the late 80s and every­one had a debit card to get their cash out of a machine when needed. It took him a while but I showed him what he could do and he no longer needed to cash that check once a week.

He was a great bar­beque man and got me sway from using lighter fluid to start my char­coals and bought me my first “ket­tle” for heat­ing the coals.  He told me he used to throw in dif­fer­ent woods for fla­vor on top of his char­coals and even used to eat his sal­ads after the meal, Euro­pean style.  I never could under­stand that.

Gov­er­nor Mario Cuomo was rumored to be run­ning for Pres­i­dent of the U.S. and Kirby and I got on the road for a three-hour ride to Albany, NY.  We walked in dur­ing the mid­dle of a press con­fer­ence the Gov­er­nor was hold­ing.  Cuomo looked up and Kirby said “We are here from Boston to see if you are going to run for Pres­i­dent!”   Cuomo looked at him and started dis­cussing the Red Sox of which Kirby was a big fan.  All the other reporters just sat and watched.  Cuomo, by the way, did not dis­cuss any­thing doing with run­ning for Pres­i­dent.  Kirby could talk to any­one intelligently.

A Red Sox fan he was and he loved Mo Vaughn.  He was his favorite, knew all of his sta­tis­tics and the sta­tis­tics of most of every­one else on the team.  He used to bet his col­league Jack Harper who was a big Bal­ti­more fan every year on some­thing to do with the two teams.

Kirby and Me, mid 1990s.

We had this gig called “Car Five,” it was about Kirby let­ting me drive where I wanted, lis­ten to the radios and Kirby look­ing for inter­est­ing stuff.  We were on Dud­ley Street in Rox­bury when he saw an apart­ment com­plex with sneak­ers hang­ing from the power lines. Next thing I know we were out of the car talk­ing with the neigh­bors, mak­ing a great story. Shortly after the story, the City cleaned up their junk­yard back yard and we were off to the next one.

Another day he sees a hut in Dorch­ester and this man half clothed sort of drunk and the con­ver­sa­tion begins. Another great story, another Car Five in the books.

Our best one though was Mrs. Penta.  We took one of our many rides to my old haunts in Revere.  We were dri­ving around my old neigh­bor­hood and I see this woman, Mrs. Penta.  Kirby says “stop the car” and the con­ver­sa­tion begins. We walked around the neigh­bor­hood with her, came back to her house on another day and then we did this out­stand­ing piece of where I grew up and what the neigh­bor­hood had become. It was everyone’s favorite Car Five.

We had a rhythm the way we worked. He had the mic in his hand and I could just cir­cle him with the cam­era. I knew what he wanted and he knew what I was going to do. It was like magic and he took what­ever I shot it made it won­der­ful TV.  No mat­ter whom he worked with he never com­plained about the video. He would just get into the edit­ing booth and make it come together.  His ego if he had one never got in the way.

Kirby loved to use com­pelling video mul­ti­ple times in a story. If it was good he might use it two, even three times, some­thing you don’t see any­more.  He told me when he was in an edit­ing booth he wanted to grab the audio pot away from the edi­tor and blast the video so when it came into people’s homes and there was impor­tant sound their TVs would vibrate.

He tried to help me with my Eng­lish and my eat­ing habits. Some­times the Eng­lish lessons worked. He told me his father in-law Andy Rooney and I had one thing in com­mon; we both ate fast.  He would lec­ture me on eat­ing slower so I would not be as hun­gry and I could lose weight. I am still try­ing both and los­ing the battle.

When he and the fam­ily moved to Con­necti­cut he began liv­ing at Susan Wornick’s house sev­eral days dur­ing the week. He would not have her do his laun­dry so he brought it to a Laun­dro­mat near the sta­tion.  Every so often he would call me and say “I can­not get there to take it out of the dryer.” So there I was grab­bing his dried clothes for him to wear.

When his mother was in a nurs­ing home late in her life Kirby would call her every­day, tell her how much he loved her. I loved hear­ing the conversation.

He loved doing home­work with is daugh­ter Alexis and hav­ing a bar­beque din­ner ready for Emily when she got home from work.

He was really about dis­cov­ery, thus the A+ series was born. He loved going into schools and shar­ing the sto­ries of high school seniors, who achieved in the midst of adver­sity. He brought out the best in them and they made him feel good about what he was doing. He would have been a great teacher and it is fit­ting that the A+ Schol­ar­ship Fund is his legacy.

The day he died, I had seen him as he was leav­ing work for another ten­nis match at a tour­na­ment he was in. He told me he was doing great and would be play­ing in a final.

The next morn­ing I was walk­ing my dogs on West Beach in Bev­erly and as usual car­ry­ing my two-way radio when my col­league War­ren Doolin called me around 6am to tell me Kirby might be mor­tally ill.  I went to the hos­pi­tal to see him.  He was lying on the bed on life sup­port. Emily talked to him and told him his friend Stan­ley was here to see him and, unfor­tu­nately, there was no response we could see.  I can only hope he got the message.

His father died when he was around 14 and his daugh­ter Lexie was 14 when he died.

At his memo­r­ial, his mother in-law Marge said when Emily took him home for the first time she had never seen such a beau­ti­ful spec­i­men of a man and not to let him get a way.

He was a won­der­ful man, friend, artic­u­late, hand­some, lov­ing and never too big for his britches.  He got me and I miss him and he will always be a part of my memories.

I loved that man.

A Note From Kirby’s Wife, Emily Rooney, who is host/executive edi­tor of Greater Boston, WGBH-TV.

Kirby started A+ in the mid 90’s as a way of rec­og­niz­ing kids who over­came extreme odds to excel aca­d­e­m­i­cally. While Kirby con­sid­ered him­self to be a “jock” he believed too much empha­sis and credit was lav­ished upon kids who per­form well in ath­let­ics as opposed to the class­room. It means a great deal to me that the schol­ar­ship was started and con­tin­ues in his name now 15 years after his death.  The kids are inspir­ing and I owe a debt of grat­i­tude to all the CH5 peo­ple who have worked on this fea­ture, espe­cially David Brown.

To read more about The Kirby Perkins A+ Schol­ar­ship Fund please visit the web­site below:

http://www.wcvb.com/community/aplus

A note from Mayor Thomas Menino:

State­ment of Mayor Thomas M. Menino

Kirby Perkins A Plus Schol­ar­ship Fund Event

Novem­ber 13, 2012

I want to thank all of the fam­ily and friends of the late Kirby Perkins for gath­er­ing tonight to sup­port the schol­ar­ship fund that bears his name.  In par­tic­u­lar I want to thanks Emily Rooney and the entire Schol­ar­ship Com­mit­tee for the good work you have already done award­ing over 186 thou­sand dol­lars among 74 stu­dents since 1998.  And thank you to Bill Fine and WCVB for host­ing this event tonight and pro­mot­ing the A Plus Schol­ar­ship and the stu­dent recip­i­ents on air.

Kirby was much more than a first class reporter; he was one of my clos­est friends.  He loved pol­i­tics just like I do.  He was a “peo­ple per­son” much like I am.  And his skills with email were the same as mine: nonexistent.

Seri­ously though, Kirby gave me some very good advice early on in my career.   He told me to take the issues seri­ously, but not to take myself all that seri­ously.  He told me that self-deprecation was often the best response for many sit­u­a­tions espe­cially at the St. Patrick’s Day break­fast.  And he was right, on this and so much more.

I’m sure you all could tell sim­i­lar sto­ries of how Kirby helped you.  Kirby meant so much to all of you and so much to this city.  That is why we must build up the Kirby Perkins A Plus Schol­ar­ship Fund.  So it can con­tinue to help young peo­ple obtain that all impor­tant col­lege degree, and so our city and the peo­ple liv­ing here always know what a spe­cial per­son Kirby was.

I thank you all for your gen­er­ous con­tri­bu­tions so far.  But I ask you to dig a lit­tle deeper and to go a lit­tle fur­ther.  That is what Kirby would have done for any of us, so let’s all do it for the schol­ar­ship that hon­ors his legacy.

 

28Mar/122

Fenway 100, Stanley 66

July 10, 2011, 66 years old

Yes, there it is my name is up in lights, day­lights that is and don’t think I don’t love it.

I have always been a Red Sox fan. I prob­a­bly went to my first game before I started remem­ber­ing all that I remem­ber. My father was a big sports fan and it trick­led down to me. He used to love to go to Bru­ins and Red Sox games. The Celtics came to Boston long after he was a teenager so he did not see as many of those games. I remem­ber him tak­ing me to after­noon Celtics game; com­ing home and then he would take my mother and go back to the Gar­den to see the Bru­ins at night. Since he worked most week­ends, it was a big deal if he was off on a Sun­day. My par­ents espe­cially liked when the Mon­treal Cana­di­ans were play­ing as the fans would sing French songs and the Gar­den would be in a fes­tive mood.

We grew up with fam­ily all around our neigh­bor­hood and my Uncle Jack Burnim, a real Red Sox fan, would go to a Sox game every chance he had and many times offered to take me with him. The only prob­lem with going with him is if you were with him you had to eat a hot dog almost every inning and lots of pop­corn too (to mix in all the Fen­way tastes). To hear his grand­son, Judge David Lowy, tell the story, after a while it became tor­ture to eat so much junk food.

Jack took us to many games; one being the Memo­r­ial Day game against the Yan­kees in 1961, the year Roger Maris broke Babe Ruth’s home run record. I just Googled the box score and although I remem­bered all the home runs by Man­tle and Maris I did not remem­ber Bill “Moose” Skowrun’s 2 homers along with Yogi Berra hit­ting one that day. Man­tle had 2 home runs that game, his #12 and 13 of the still-early sea­son, and Maris hit 2 home runs, bring­ing his total so-far to 11. Both were well on their way to chal­lenge Ruth’s record of 60 home runs in one sea­son.   Since that sea­son, my stan­dard for judg­ing whether some­one was going to break Babe Ruth’s years’ record of 60 in a sea­son has been if the per­son has reached 11 or 13 homers by Memo­r­ial Day like Man­tle and Maris did that year.

When I think about how mes­mer­ized I was by Mark McGuire’s quest to break Maris’ record only to find out it was tainted; it still pisses me off. Such a big deal break­ing it, but really not a big deal. That is what aster­isks are for. I think most peo­ple in 1961 were root­ing for Mickey Man­tle to beat out Maris for Ruth’s record but an injury late in the sea­son took him out of the run­ning.  Accord­ing to the movie “61” about the chase, Man­tle was root­ing for Maris to pull the feat off anyway.

Going to Fen­way Park was an easy task when you grew up in Revere. When there was noth­ing to do you could always hop on the train at Revere Beach Sta­tion, ride to Gov­ern­ment Cen­ter (it was called Scol­lay Square back then) trans­fer or walk to get to Park Street Sta­tion and then get the trol­ley to Ken­more Square. You had to make sure you got the right trol­ley oth­er­wise you ended up in never, never land some­where off of Hunt­ing­ton Avenue and no one from Revere would know where they were.

Of course you prob­a­bly would not have walked from Scol­lay Square, as it would have been another fee of a nickel to get back on a train at a dif­fer­ent stop. Those trol­leys were great back then; you would rock and roll all the way there. The old cars were shaky, crowded and not air-conditioned. Can you imag­ine a non air-conditioned train after spend­ing the day in the hot sun at Fen­way, not fun! After a day game we would go to the Ken­more Hotel to the lit­tle ice cream par­lor and get a deli­cious Sun­dae (and I mean deli­cious) cost­ing a quarter.

Any night a crew of us hang­ing around in the 50s and 60s could go to Fen­way watch Dick Rad­datz mow them down along with the other 10,000 peo­ple who may be in atten­dance. Jim Pier­sal, a long time Red Sox cen­ter fielder, vis­ited our local gro­cery store, Arthur’s Cream­ery, while endors­ing a choco­late drink and, yes, I got his autograph.

Tom Yawkey was prob­a­bly the only rea­son the Red Sox stayed in Boston with the small crowds in atten­dance. It all changed in 1967, the “Impos­si­ble Dream Year” when sell­outs became nor­mal busi­ness. Back then, there were no play­offs, you were the best team in base­ball in your league or you ended your sea­son when the sea­son ended. With the two num­ber one teams play­ing the World Series you got the best of the best, at least supposedly.

Dick Williams showed up as man­ager in 1967 and things just came together. I did not cover any of the games as a pho­tog­ra­pher but I had a press pass and could go to any game I wanted and sit in the photographer’s box. I did not take as much advan­tage of the perk as I should have. This was before the photographer’s box next to their dugout. Every­thing was shot from above or you floated around look­ing for an aisle seat. A big treat going to a game with the press pass was to be able to eat in the press lunch­room, where there was deli­cious food and it was free. A tip of $1.00 was the stan­dard and where could you eat as much as you want of good food for a buck.

The week­end the Red Sox won the pen­nant in 1967 every­one was work­ing. I was in the lab at the paper. We were play­ing the Min­nesota Twins and had to win both Sat­ur­day and Sunday’s game while one of the other teams in the league lost. I was very busy with many rolls of film being shipped in to make our many edi­tions. Then it was over, the Sox won and John Lan­ders had a great photo of Jim Lon­borg being car­ried off the field on his teammate’s shoul­ders after beat­ing the great pitcher Dean Chance in what you could call a non-playoff, play­off game, win­ner take all.

I went with pho­tog­ra­pher Kevin Cole to St. Louis for the World Series that year. I never got to the park as I worked out of the St. Louis Post Dis­patch doing all of Kevin’s lab work and trans­mit­ting over 60 pho­tos back to Boston to be used in our edi­tions. Kevin did his usual great job catch­ing all the action.

Ear­lier in the sea­son Lon­borg got engaged and the hunt for his fiancé was on and I was on the chase. There I was at Fen­way Park look­ing for his fiancé, not know­ing where to look, all of a sud­den a car pulls up by the player’s entrance, Lon­borg gets out of the car and she was dri­ving. Very gra­ciously, she held up her hand to dis­play her ring. I prob­a­bly yelled out ask­ing her to hold up her hand, thank­fully I knew which hand the ring was on and if you were dri­ving the left hand is on the win­dow side. Lon­borg did not marry this woman, and went on to be a South Shore area den­tist. I have never seen him again in person.

Ken “Hawk” Har­rel­son throw­ing his cast away, St. Elizabeth’s Hospital

When Ken “Hawk” Har­rel­son (now the Chicago White Sox announcer) had his cast removed from leg injury I was at Saint Elizabeth’s Hos­pi­tal and asked him to throw the cast away for the cam­era. He was a very media savvy ath­lete. Har­rel­son came to the Red Sox dur­ing their Pen­nant drive to replace the injured Tony Conigliaro.

Carl Yast­trzem­ski, Tony Conigliaro, Hank Aaron, open­ing day 1976

In the Conigliaro era there was always some­thing going on. What­ever he did we did. There was the night he got into a car acci­dent in Somerville and was taken to the hos­pi­tal. Then I was cov­er­ing his younger brother Richie play­ing foot­ball for Swamp­scott High School and the whole Conigliaro fam­ily was there. I was assigned to show every­one. I was tak­ing some pho­tos of the fam­ily and Tony came play­fully charg­ing at me like he was going to tackle me. Of course, I wasn’t sure whether or not he would throw me to the ground so I moved out of the way. I met his brother Billy sev­eral times as he was in high school with a friend of mine from Swamp­scott, Susan Feldman.

Jim Willoughby, Rick Wise, Juan Beniquez, Doug Grif­fin, Fred Lynn, Dick Drago, Reg­gie Cleve­land, Dick Pole, Johnny Pesky, Denny Doyle, Carl Yas­trzem­ski, Dwight Evans, Bob Mont­gomery, Rico Petro­celli Might have been 1975, start of World Series?

In 1975, when Car­leton Fisk hit is game win­ning home run against Cincin­nati in the World Series I was in the photographer’s box shoot­ing color film watch­ing Fisk wav­ing his home run ball fair. I ran out on the field with every­one else and it was fun. Still haven’t found those slides.

Oops! Danielle Tor­rez, with score­card in hand knows the Red Sox sea­son is over after her hus­band Mike gave up a 3 run homer to Bucky Dent!

Bucky Dent hits his game win­ning 3 run homer and I was the floater for the one game play­off with the Yan­kees in 1978. I was walk­ing around try­ing to get “dif­fer­ent pho­tos” for the later edi­tions. I was behind the home plate screen tak­ing pho­tos of Mike Tor­rez pitch­ing and keep­ing an eye on his wife Danielle who also behind the back­stop.  Dent came up to the plate and hit his blast and the Red Sox sea­son was over. Danielle knew it also and I had this really good photo of her expres­sion, which got a one col­umn cut in the paper. The front-page head­line the next day was this very, very, very small type, which said “Red Sox Lose” and you were not a base­ball fan you would not have noticed. Sam Cohen our great sports edi­tor always had great ideas to be different.

Of course there was Bill Lee, Red Sox pitcher; talk about some­one who danced to his own drum­mer!  Must have been a Wednes­day night when he walked off the team or some­thing like that as I was work­ing and I was dis­patched to his Bel­mont home to get a shot of him. I was in front of his house when he came jog­ging up the street. I stood there and took some pho­tos of him arriv­ing, fol­lowed him down the dri­ve­way and of course he knew I was tak­ing his photo as he acknowl­edged my pres­ence. Next week I heard from Jerry Buck­ley the Red Sox pho­tog­ra­pher back then that Lee had said he was stalked and I came out behind the bushes to get his photo. Two sides to a story, he was danc­ing as far as I was concerned.

When Oil Can Boyd (a Red Sox pitcher) flipped his lid so to speak reporter Ron Gol­lobin and I were sent to his Chelsea apart­ment try­ing to seek him out for what­ever he wanted to say. It did not go to well. He came out the door, spot­ted us and took steps towards us. He was yelling at me flay­ing his arms and Gol­lobin stepped between us. He cre­ated a real photo opp. In that same era while hon­ey­moon­ing in Hawaii I bumped into the very friendly Dwight Evans and his wife vaca­tion­ing there.

There were many side­bars through my years of Red Sox cov­er­age. There were the 4 peo­ple mur­dered at Sammy White’s Bowl­ing Alley, Sep­tem­ber 22, 1980 in Brighton. The for­mer Red Sox catcher owned the alley. I was out­side when the police inves­ti­ga­tion was tak­ing place and got a photo of a dis­traught rel­a­tive wait­ing for word from the Boston Police.

In 1986, Red Sox vs. the Mets for the World Series, every­one was excited.  I was with reporter Susan Wor­nick, Neil Unger­lieder (now head of our inter­net site, “thebostonchannel.com) and Chan­nel Five Berra­neck Fel­low, Rebecca Rowl­ings. We were doing a story about the pros­ti­tutes doing busi­ness in Boston. We pulled over on Wash­ing­ton Street near the for­mer Wang The­atre to watch the end of the game, as my com­pany car was equipped with a TV.

Neil who is a very big Red Sox fan com­mented, “the Red Sox are going to win a World Series!” We were very intent watch­ing; know­ing if they won our story would change to local cel­e­bra­tions. Then it hap­pened, Bill Buck­ner missed the grounder to first in the tenth inning after the Red Sox were up 3 to 2 in games and every­thing unfolded. It was over, and all that was left was the Red Sox to try and recover the next night. We all know what hap­pened after that, it took 18 more years to finally win a World Series bring­ing the total up to 86 years between championships.

I was at Fen­way Park when the Red Sox came home in the early morn­ing hours. In those days we were a wel­come sight to the play­ers and had good access to the bus and the play­ers. Pitcher Bob “Steamer” Stan­ley one of the nicest ath­let­ics you could ever meet got off the bus and there was a fan yelling, “Bob you’re the best!” It was just after the ongo­ing con­tro­versy of whether he threw a wild pitch or the catcher Rich Ged­man had a passed ball. Most think it was a passed ball but he took the hit gra­ciously. A lit­tle name-dropping here, his daugh­ter Kristin worked at Chan­nel Five as a pro­ducer and I went to her wed­ding in 2010.

After that there was the time reporter Jack Harper and I went into the Red Sox dress­ing room, before yel­low tape, when all you needed to do was show up at Fen­way show your Fen­way Pass and walk around includ­ing the locker room. We walked in and there were a cou­ple of play­ers sit­ting there (must have been after the “86” loss) includ­ing Jim Rice. Every­one knew Mr. Rice did not like the media back then. If looks could kill Jack and I would not be here now.

Red Sox World Series Parade, 2004, 86 years after the last one.

Today, I do very lit­tle Red Sox cov­er­age although I was there in the 90s after they won the Pen­nant by beat­ing the Angels in the play­offs, ran out on the field with every­one else to the pitcher’s mound for the cel­e­bra­tion and got excel­lent video. I cov­ered the local cel­e­bra­tions after they won the Series in 04 and 07 and hope they do it again while I am still working.

Johnny Damon, Molly and Han­nah, great Christ­mas card, 2004

But my high­light of Fen­way will always be get­ting my birth­day wish up on the bleacher screen unless I ever get to throw out the first pitch and make a fool out of myself when I can­not reach the plate.

 

20Jun/111

Lord Stanley, The Bruins And The Stanley Cup

Bru­ins Cap­tain holds up the Cup for all to see dur­ing the Rolling Rally.

It took almost 45 years but I got to cover the Boston Bru­ins win­ning the Stan­ley Cup for the third time. There was almost 40 years in between the 2nd and 3rd cham­pi­onships; the first two hap­pened when I was an avid fan and sea­son ticket holder.  I saw every game Bobby Orr played at Boston Gar­den and even drove down to watch the Bru­ins and the Rangers play in New York back in the days when hockey was very impor­tant to me.

The morn­ing after the win was fun, got called into work early to go to Logan Air­port for the team’s return from Van­cou­ver and thought I might get to see them get­ting off the plane for their bus ride back to the Gar­den.  Not to be, every­thing was secre­tive and the news crews were not sure which gate the bus would come off the tar­mac through and they fooled us all as they went out an open­ing none of us real­ized would be used. Beat before I could even get into 2nd gear.

From Logan I went to Cause­way Street and think­ing the way I did 40 years ago I for­got the bus would pull into the front park­ing lot and we could see them get­ting into their cars and maybe even get to talk with them. I had thought they would drive into the Gar­den like they used to, inside via the long ramp in the back of the build­ing and flee the news hounds. I guess some­times I do live in the past. Had I known the great access we were going to have I would have gone a lit­tle faster and skipped the pit stop I made before I got there. When I did get there and real­ized what was going on I ran through the traf­fic to be where the action was.

The first player I spot­ted was Zdeno Chara, the big foot­ball player size defense­man, who was in the back seat of a limo but the guest with him was what made me take notice. He had the Stan­ley Cup sit­ting next to him and was the first of the play­ers to take it home.  He is the Cap­tain so I guess he might decide who is first or maybe it is an auto­matic. After I tapped on his car win­dow sev­eral times to see if he would open it for me I real­ized it just was not going to hap­pen so I moved on to the big­ger group which was slowly becom­ing smaller and smaller and only a few of the play­ers were still there. I did stick my mic in one of the car win­dows but I don’t even know who it was being interviewed.

From there the day got bet­ter. Mike Dowl­ing, a WCVB sports reporter, caught up with me and we went look­ing for the Bru­ins play­ers who lived in the North End with no clue where that might be. This ven­ture only lasted a few min­utes as we got word we were going to inter­view Kevin and Lynn Marc­hand the par­ents of Brad, the Bru­ins star rookie who had three points in the 7th and decid­ing game and may have been one of the final­ists for MVP.

Talk about a class act. They walked down to the Gar­den from Brad’s apart­ment and talked to us for quite awhile giv­ing some insight into their won­der­ful adven­ture chas­ing the Stan­ley Cup with their son Brad. What fun. His father had gone to 20 play­off games and his mother only 16. They told us she was banned from the games after she attended two los­ing games. When they lost a game she wasn’t at she was then allowed to con­tinue the run. Mike Dowl­ing told me another par­ent of one of the play­ers also suf­fered the same fate after she was at a cou­ple of los­ing games. Super­sti­tion is super­sti­tion and being a lot­tery player I know what that word means.

Mrs. Marc­hand went on to tell us how she really dis­liked his beard and hoped he would be shav­ing it ASAP. They joked about what a mess his apart­ment was and she was hop­ing he would get some­one to keep it clean. They also talked about their other ath­letic son and two daugh­ters even let­ting us know Brad’s younger brother was a faster skater and tougher on the ice.

But the real fun began a few hours later when we found out the Cup was being wheeled down Com­mer­cial Street in the North End to Tia’s restau­rant on the water­front where many of the team would meet for cock­tails. It was very crowded at the out­side bar with patrons snap­ping pho­tos or just gawk­ing when they real­ized the stars of the day and the Stan­ley Cup were in plain view for every­one to see and all had their cell phones click­ing away with some of the peo­ple man­ning real cam­eras. I showed one of the wait­resses how to use the zoom on her newly bought IPad and made her day.

What a thrill to see today’s “heroes” out mix­ing with the reg­u­lars and enjoy­ing every moment of it. I could have recited every player’s name in the NHL back in the 60s and 70s but to tell the truth today I have not a clue who is who. This year I watched all the play­off games and the play­ers on the Bru­ins did not shave dur­ing the play­offs and all had play­off beards. It threw me for a loop on Thurs­day as they had almost all clipped their beards when I saw them and I had fig­ure out who is who. I have not fig­ured it out yet.

These play­ers had mus­cles on mus­cles, 6 pack abs that peo­ple would die for and if I were to try to get them I prob­a­bly would die. I don’t think the ath­letes of today are bet­ter ath­letes than those of the long gone era but they cer­tainly are stronger and have more mus­cle. Then there is the tat­toos; or as the kids call them “ink”. The only ink on my era’s ath­letes would have been from a leak­ing pen after sign­ing an autograph.

My first rally was after the Celtics won one of their 18 cham­pi­onships and Boston finally hon­ored them with a parade in the 60s. They were in con­vert­ibles dri­ving through the Park Square area. I was so mes­mer­ized by the John Havlicek’s beau­ti­ful wife Beth, (what a hot­tie and that word was not even invented back then) I don’t think I shot any­thing but pho­tos of her.

On City Hall Plaza in the 80s there was another Celtics rally and Larry Bird told the tens of thou­sands, “Moses eats shit,” refer­ring to Moses Mal­one after the Celtics beat the Hous­ton Rock­ets. Did that set off a pound or two of let­ters and phone calls!

Bru­ins Locker Room, 1969, Bobby Orr and team­mates the Year before they won the Stan­ley Cup. See other Bru­ins story in blogs.

After one of the Bru­ins cham­pi­onships in the 70s, Phil Espos­ito had surgery at MGH and the Bru­ins were hav­ing their breakup din­ner at a nearby restau­rant.  There was no way Phil wasn’t going to be there so some of his team mem­bers pushed his hos­pi­tal bed with him in it to the restau­rant. The story goes they broke the frame to a door or two get­ting out of the hos­pi­tal and he was still hooked up to IVs. With that team the whole story could be true.

For their first Cup win at Boston Gar­den my seats sec­tion 73, seats 3 and 4 gave me a great view of Bobby Orr’s over­time goal and in 1972 I was at Logan Air­port when the Bru­ins returned with the Stan­ley Cup after beat­ing the New York Rangers at Madi­son Square Gar­den. We were allowed up to the exit ramp and I was tak­ing pho­tos of every­body when Bobby Orr appeared walk­ing with a young woman, (he handed the young woman I was with a bot­tle of cham­pagne from the cel­e­bra­tion) I mis­tak­enly iden­ti­fied as his girl­friend  Peggy, his future wife, WRONG! The next day I was scram­bling to fig­ure out who she was. I went to Welles­ley and knocked on the State Trea­surer Bob Crane’s door with photo in hand to find out who she was and of course Bob knew it was a sec­re­tary from the Bru­ins’ office. He was bud­dies with Orr and knew all about the team.

Who can for­get the Bru­ins first Stan­ley Cup Cham­pi­onship rally on Boston’s City Hall Plaza when Johnny “Pie” Macken­zie poured a pitcher of beer over Mayor Kevin White’s head and then the Mayor returned the deed after they won their 2nd cup in 1972.

In 1975 after Car­leton Fisk hit his famous home run against the Cincin­nati Reds I ran out on the field with all the other pho­tog­ra­phers as I was cov­er­ing the game. In 1986 there I was again run­ning out to home plate after the Red Sox beat the Angels in 1986 to go to the World Series.

Who can for­get the 2004 Red Sox pre-rolling rally event at Fen­way Park when I chose to not work and take my girls to the parade. We walked up to the gate at Fen­way on a whim and there was a Boston Cop I have known for­ever at the door. A few moments later, we were inside enjoy­ing the fes­tiv­i­ties, run­ning on the field as the Duck Boats loaded. Our Christ­mas pic­ture that year was my girls with Johnny Damon.

My scari­est moment in sports came in Jan­u­ary 1986 when the Patri­ots beat Miami for the right to face the Chicago Bears in the Super Bowl. I was dis­patched to Green Air­port in Rhode Island for a 2am arrival of the team. Works out there must have been 10,000 peo­ple who also wanted to greet them.  We were some­how in the mid­dle of the tar­mac after the plane landed wait­ing for the play­ers to come down the walk­way. All of a sud­den these 10,000 peo­ple broke through what­ever police lines were there and came charg­ing out to the plane. I was with Jim Reddy a tech­ni­cian at the sta­tion who was sent with me to help. They came rush­ing, I thought it was over, Jim grabbed me and put this big bear hug on me and we just stood in the mid­dle like a street pole and thank­fully the crowd went around us. I bet $50.00 on the game and I think the Patri­ots lost by almost 50 points.

In 1986 after the Red Sox lost to the Mets in one of the games after the con­tro­versy that stemmed between a pitch by Bob Stan­ley being a wild pitch or it being a passed ball by catcher Rich Ged­man, I was at Fen­way when the heart bro­ken team arrived home I heard one of the fol­low­ers yelling out to Stan­ley, “You’re the best” and not many agreed at that point in time.

Patrice Berg­eron ges­tures to the crowd while rid­ing in the Rolling Rally.

Today, June 18, was the big rally for the Bru­ins Cham­pi­onship. In all the ral­lies I have cov­ered this was the biggest crowd pleaser. They had to be more than a mil­lion folks lin­ing the streets of Boston for the rolling rally. It was great to be able to share it with those folks even if I was behind the camera.

So in my 45 years of news pho­tog­ra­phy I have worked 3 Super Bowl cel­e­bra­tions, two World Series ral­lies, numer­ous Celtics cel­e­bra­tions and 3 Bru­ins Stan­ley Cup “par­ties.” Not bad for a man whose only ath­letic pur­suit is read­ing the sports sec­tion of var­i­ous publications.

My daugh­ters at 21 and 22 have seen all of the home­town teams win a cham­pi­onship, a feat that took me 55 years.

Out­side the gar­den the other day when the Bru­ins returned I bumped in Tom Farmer, for­mer Her­ald reporter and long time friend. His ques­tion to me was “I bet you have cov­ered all three of their cup wins?” My answer was “yes” and now I am won­der­ing if he is try­ing to tell me I am old?

The only thing I do know if it takes another 40 years to win the cup again I will not be there for the celebration.

 

24May/113

Finally A Commencement I Wanted To Go To!

Han­nah, Molly and Debbie

Wow, what a day, May 22, 2011 a day I will always remem­ber as our old­est daugh­ter Molly got her Bach­e­lor of Sci­ence degree at Boston University’s 138th com­mence­ment. Yes I do play that num­ber in the lot­tery as it was my first News Photographer’s license plate and my call “num­bers” for all the news groups I am a mem­ber of. Sev­eral years ago I hit it two nights in a row as the num­ber repeated itself.  No I did not win a ton of money!

I guess it started in 1979 when I met my wife Deb­bie in the Arnold Arbore­tum while we were both walk­ing our dogs. Hers was mutt named Abby and mine was a pedi­gree Golden Retriever called Glossy.  Talk about a role rever­sal. The dogs fell in love right away and a few min­utes later I guess we did also.

In 1989 we were blessed with two daugh­ters 10 months apart and today was the cul­mi­na­tion of what life is sup­posed to be if you are lucky and things go right.  Molly grad­u­ated with her BS in health stud­ies; She will con­tinue for two more years for her doc­tor­ate in phys­i­cal therapy.

Our other daugh­ter Han­nah will grad­u­ate next year with her nurs­ing degree and then the next year Molly will get her doc­tor­ate so we will have had three com­mence­ments in three years.

Not bad for a high school grad­u­ate who at that time was not sure if I grad­u­ated with my class or not. It was a hot June day in 1963 when I had my cap (I still have that cap some­where) and gown on at Harry Della Russo Sta­dium in Revere. In those days I had heard about kids who got blank diplo­mas as they did not pass their grades.  I remem­ber my name being called, walk­ing up, get­ting my diploma, going back to my seat and squeez­ing the folder open to see if I had a win­ning hand, yup I did it.

For the last 45 years in the news busi­ness I have cov­ered scores of grad­u­a­tions and com­mence­ments  but none meant as much to me as Molly’s day. It was a long day which began when we left home at 7:30 in the morn­ing for a 9am cer­e­mony at BU’s Sar­gent Col­lege. I was over­whelmed with joy as I watched Molly get her degree and real­ized Deb­bie and I had done well, very well. How did we ever pull this off? Deb­bie did a great job and I guess I sup­plied support.

Some of the com­mence­ments I cover in the past were mem­o­rable, like when Richard Car­di­nal Cush­ing walked down the cen­ter aisle of the Boston Col­lege com­mence­ment in all his splen­dor with his red robes flow­ing and the audi­ence at Boston Col­lege was mes­mer­ized by his presence.

Another year at BC there was a grad­u­ate wear­ing a Mickey Mouse tee shirt and the pic­ture I took ended up on Page One in the Record Amer­i­can. At MIT there was Lee Iacocca best known for the revival of the Chrysler Cor­po­ra­tion from near bank­ruptcy telling the stu­dents to “start your engines” as his clos­ing remark.

I think I have cov­ered most of the col­lege com­mence­ments in the area at least once but I have never cov­ered Harvard’s com­mence­ment. Don’t know why it worked out that way but maybe because they always grad­u­ate on Thurs­days and for many years at the news­pa­per I had Sun­day and Thurs­day off?  Maybe I will go my whole career with­out that one. Back in the 60s when there were great demon­stra­tions I had wished I was cov­er­ing it.

Katie Couric

Today we lis­tened to Katie Couric, a net­work stand­out give a great speech about the future for these grad­u­ates. Talk­ing about her rise to the top and how low she was on the totem pole when she began. Just try­ing to get in the door for her was tough.

I think her best story was when she first took the anchor desk for the CBS nightly news in “06” and how harsh the crit­ics were on her. From the clothes she was wear­ing to her hair style, makeup and finally they said she lacked “grav­i­tas.”  Not being sure what the word meant she decided the word grav­i­tas really meant she had no tes­ti­cles. What a roar went up from all of us on that one.

It was a won­der­ful day for Deb­bie and I and the more I think about it the more I real­ize we did do some­thing right, in our old age we will have some­one to help us get out of bed and another daugh­ter to give us our medication.

 

19Jan/110

Celtics, Knicks, Spike Lee and Me

Spike Lee a giant in his indus­try has used my photo “The Soil­ing Of Old Glory” in at least two of his movies, one of them being Mal­colm X and I have an auto­graphed hat from him. A cou­ple of weeks ago I got an email from my web­site which asked for my phone num­ber as the tele­phone num­ber on my web­site was incor­rect. The only catch to me from this email was it said the num­ber that is on the site when dialed got them to a pack­ing company.

My radar went up and I thought it was some kind of sex­ual ref­er­ence. I sent a reply ask­ing “who are you?” Their reply said Spike Lee wants to talk to you. Of course I sent the cor­rect num­ber back imme­di­ately I would have run to New York if needed.

I was out­side Ted’s Mobil in Methuen, Mass­a­chu­setts doing the 390 mil­lion plus Megamil­lions story for my sta­tion. I thought I might not be buy­ing the win­ning ticket but I will be talk­ing with Spike Lee almost as good.

I was think­ing when he called I would get to know his per­sonal phone num­ber from caller ID but of course all it said was incom­ing. The voice on the other end intro­duced him­self as Spike Lee and I imme­di­ately said “before we talk about busi­ness I want to ask you about the Celtics/Knicks game from last month?”

I ask him if he ever saw the video of the game and his answer was “you mean the night we got robbed?” I said you did not get robbed and he told me “Paul Pierce’s shot was made with .7 sec­onds left and the Knicks had .4 sec­onds left. I insisted they did not get robbed, they lost, then told him about the announces talk­ing about him and his love of the Knicks but sort of pok­ing fun at him.

He said “you mean Tommy Hein­sohn or Cedric Maxwell?  I said no it was a national game and they were not the announc­ers and he imme­di­ately said “it must be Van Gundy and com­pany?”  I told him I was not sure but they were all over the fact that his old friend who now played for the Celtics whose name I had to ask him by ask­ing him who it was that went from the Knicks to the Celtics.  He answered “Nate Robin­son” and he was hav­ing a great night against the Knicks which I think the announc­ers were enjoy­ing as the cam­eras played on Spike Lee. My last remark was “you got more face time than Jack Nichol­son gets at Lak­ers’ games.”

What a thrill I got to talk about bas­ket­ball with Spike Lee and even bet­ter the Celtics won that night. Of course I have been at a cou­ple of Celtics’ win­ning cham­pi­onship games. The best one was in 1962 when Frank Selvy of the Lak­ers missed an 8 footer with the score tied at 100 and sec­onds tick­ing down, Bill Rus­sell pulled down the rebound, went to his knees and held on till reg­u­la­tion time ended.

In that game the Lak­ers’ great Elgin Bay­lor fouled out in over­time. The Celtics starters ran over to the vis­it­ing bench to shake Baylor’s hand after he sat down and then the Celtics won the cham­pi­onship in the overtime.

I was at the Bru­ins Stan­ley Cup vic­tory in 1970 when they beat St. Louis at Boston Gar­den sit­ting in my sea­son ticket seats sec­tion 73 row C seat 3 or 4. I saw every game Bobby Orr played at Boston Gar­den includ­ing when he played with the Oshawa Gen­er­als as they would play a game or two every year in Boston. I gave up my seats after Orr left for the Chicago Blackhawks.

When the Bru­ins beat the Rangers for the Stan­ley Cup in 1972 I was at Logan Air­port at the gate when the Bru­ins returned with the Cup in hand.  Of course I messed the cap­tion for the photo up by misiden­ti­fy­ing the woman get­ting off the plane as Bobby Orr’s girl­friend Peggy who even­tu­ally became his wife.  The young woman in the photo was one of the assis­tants in the Bru­ins office.  I think I was more upset than the edi­tors when they made the correction.

In the 1976 play­offs the Celtics beat Phoenix in the 5th game but it took three over­times and the last over­time and the vic­tory came at the end of the court where I was sit­ting.  Celtics went on to win the Cham­pi­onship in seven games.

In 1975 I ran out onto the field as a still cam­era­man cov­er­ing the game for the Her­ald Amer­i­can after Car­leton Fisk hit his famous 12 inning 6th game of the World Series win­ning home run against the Cincin­nati Reds in the World Series.  Fisk was wav­ing it fair as he watched it going out of the park as he rounded first base.

In 1986 I was on the field for the Red Sox vic­tory that sent them to the World Series against the Mets and out­side Fen­way Park after they lost the cham­pi­onship to the Mets in part due to Bill Buckner’s error when they came back home.  It was 3: am or so and there was a fan yelling to Bob Stan­ley “you are the best!”

I sat in Red Auerbach’s box at a home game once with my good friend Alan Gorin as the paper’s sports edi­tor Sam Cohen who was always there with Red saw us and invited us into two empty seats.  No Red did not engage in a con­ver­sa­tion with me other than say­ing hello.

And now I got to talk with Spike Lee, not bad!!!

7Dec/106

Senator Edward Brooke and My Beginning!

This photo of then Attor­ney Gen­eral Edward W. Brooke is one of my favorites from his vic­to­ri­ous cam­paign to become the first elected African Amer­i­can Sen­a­tor in the US Sen­ate. It was taken dur­ing the Colum­bus Day Parade in East Boston in 1966.

It all began for me in May of 1966. I was fin­ish­ing up a one year course in pho­tog­ra­phy at the “Franklin Insti­tute of Boston” in Boston’s South End.  I had been chas­ing fires and acci­dents for many years and a cou­ple of years before this my father said to me “you are there why not take pho­tos” and he got me a camera.

I had a great expe­ri­ence at the school and my instruc­tor would be Mor­ris Miller a won­der­ful knowl­edge­able pho­tog­ra­pher from Revere who just hap­pened to be a con­tem­po­rary of my parent’s, one of my Cub Scout lead­ers and I went to school with his chil­dren.  This was an unex­pected plus when I reported to class the first day as we had no idea he had signed on to teach.

He nur­tured a class full of great peo­ple through the fun­da­men­tals of pho­tog­ra­phy and I finally learned what depth of field was and how to stop action.  Before this course I hate to think about how much I did not know.

In May of 1966 a rep­re­sen­ta­tive  (I only remem­ber his first name, Bob) of the adver­tis­ing agency work­ing with Attor­ney Gen­eral Edward Brooke’s cam­paign to win the US Sen­ate seat being vacated by retir­ing long time US Sen­a­tor Lev­erett Salton­stall. He came to the school look­ing for a pho­tog­ra­pher to travel with then Attor­ney Gen­eral Edward Brooke tak­ing pic­tures of him wher­ever he went and what­ever he was doing.

After sev­eral inter­views with many of my class­mates I got the job.  It helped I had a dark­room at home and I told Bob I was used to get­ting up in the mid­dle of the night and keep­ing weird hours.  I am sure there were a lot of other influ­ences like know­ing the right peo­ple and hav­ing great potential.

My first day on the job in May of “66” I went to a meet­ing of Repub­li­can Women at a hotel in Boston.  I took many rolls of film and my main assign­ment was to be there when Mr. Brooke shook hands with any­one and who­ever was trav­el­ing with me would take their name and I would give them the roll of film num­ber and neg­a­tive number.

I went home after a long day of sev­eral events, stayed up most of the night into the early morn­ing hours and had 100 or so pic­tures ready to be signed at the Brooke Cam­paign Head­quar­ters the next morn­ing. They were very impressed.

I knew noth­ing about pol­i­tics but knew how to take pic­tures, keep my mouth shut and do what­ever was requested.  It was a great 8 months.  I trav­eled the state from east to west, north and south and met peo­ple who really believed in Brooke and his cam­paign.  I had my first legal drink at age 21 with staffers at a Hol­i­day Inn some­where in the State and I ordered a Tom Collins. I also had my first Mar­tini with the group.

In bet­ter times, Sen­a­tor Brooke with Pres­i­dent Nixon in Boston, mid 1970s.

It was a great time for a naïve 21 year old.  I saw how the real news pho­tog­ra­phers worked and met many national net­work cor­re­spon­dents.  In the Fall of 66 my imme­di­ate boss Joe McMa­hon and another Assis­tant Attor­ney Gen­eral Bill Hay­den drove down to Wash­ing­ton.  We met at mid­night at the Bea­con Hill Head­quar­ters and I drove Joe’s Mus­tang for the next 8 hours to the Capi­tol of the United States. I think we had the top down all the way.

Dur­ing that visit which as an endorse­ment and fund rais­ing event the future Sen­a­tor met with Richard Nixon, who was in-between an elected office, even­tu­ally becom­ing the Pres­i­dent of the United States, Everett Dirk­sen, US Sen­a­tor from Illi­nois, Howard Baker a US Sen­a­tor from Ten­nessee and even­tual Chief Of Staff for Pres­i­dent Ronald Rea­gan.  Baker it turned out was a real cam­era buff although I did not know it at the time and I met sev­eral other elected offi­cials  whose names I for­get.  These were the news mak­ers and I got to take pho­tos of them and shake their hands.

It was a great begin­ning, excit­ing, adven­tur­ous and the chance to meet folks I would have never met with­out this opportunity.

Mr. Brooke was a warm, charis­matic man whose per­son­al­ity and smile were all win­ners.  He was the man of the hour and defeated his oppo­nent Endi­cott “Chubb” Peabody a for­mer Gov­er­nor of Mass­a­chu­setts by hun­dreds of thou­sands of votes.  In an unof­fi­cial pool amongst the staff it was Mr. Brooke’s wife Remi­gia who won the pool.

After the cam­paign was over his pub­lic rela­tions per­son Gerry Sadow got me inter­views at the three Boston papers, The Boston Herald-Traveler, Boston Globe and the Record Amer­i­can.  I met with the chief pho­tog­ra­phers at the three news­pa­pers and only Myer Ostroff the Record American’s Chief saw my poten­tial and hired me.

I had a year’s pro­ba­tion­ary period and my first day on the job 44 years ago as of this writ­ing, Novem­ber 22, 1966 I wore a suit and tie. I walked into the Record Amer­i­can at their orig­i­nal office at 5 Winthrop Square in Down­town Boston and waited out­side the photo lab on the third floor for some­one to let me into the labs.

Mor­ris Ostroff, the Chief Photographer’s older brother let me in. He was a short man who always was smok­ing a long cigar.  He intro­duced him­self to me and said fol­low me. We went down the cor­ri­dor to the print­ing labs there were 5 of them, handed me a sponge and an apron and told me to please clean up the lab, the start of my illus­tri­ous career.

6Dec/101

Rolling Stones

Mick Jag­ger Worces­ter Air­port, Sep­tem­ber 1981

In Sep­tem­ber of 1981 reporter Bob Kee­ley and I were sent to the Brim­field, Mass­a­chu­setts to find the Rolling Stones.  We had got­ten word that the group was prac­tic­ing out there for an upcom­ing tour.  It took a day or two to find where the farm stu­dio they were work­ing at was located.

We spent the week hang­ing around the out­skirts of the farm just wait­ing for a glimpse of the mem­bers.  We did see some of the female com­pan­ions horse­back rid­ing on a cou­ple of those days but no sight­ing of the musicians.

On Fri­day of that week word was out they would be fly­ing out of Worces­ter Air­port.  We all waited with many more of the Boston Media show­ing up. I only knew Mick Jag­ger but was lucky enough to get images of every­one in the group.  Of course I had to rely on my good friend, fel­low pho­tog­ra­pher and rock and roll expert Ted Gart­land to ID the other mem­bers in my photos.

Please visit my Smug­Mug site to view and pur­chase pho­tos: http://stanleyformanphotos.smugmug.com/