Archive for June, 2013

Lightning flies above Boston’s Logan airport

Lightning, associated with a line of heavy thunderstorms, briefly delayed some flights tonight at Logan airport. The arrivals and departures used many different runway configurations to avoid flying into the storms. Here are four photos where lightning is seen in the same photo as an airplane, from varying distances.

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Boston fire Lt. Steven Minehan died 19 years ago today.

On this date in 1994, Boston fire Lieutenant Steven F. Minehan, of Boylston street’s Ladder 15, died in a 9-alarm fire  in Charlestown, after he became trapped in a large warehouse as he searched for other trapped firefighters. I had been a staff photographer at the Boston Herald for almost 15 months that night when, police scanners broke the silence of what had been a quiet evening. What I heard on the fireground radio was even more disturbing. John Landers Jr., then night desk photo editor, also heard the initial call for help, and he dispatched me to the scene. Below are my photos from that night and from Lt. Minehan’s funeral. Over the years I have been lucky to be able to call Lt. Minehan’s wife Kathy a friend. RIP Lt. Minehan. The photo of Lt. Minehan, at bottom of page, is courtesy of Bill Noonan. Sorry for the low quality of these photos.

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Photographing tonight’s Supermoon, a jet-setting surprise.

I did not go out searching for an airplane flying “through” tonight’s Supermoon, though an airplane found me. I, along with many other Winthrop Beach moon-watchers, were disappointed that it took nearly a half hour after moonrise for the moon to show itself. A deck of clouds and haze blocked the lunar delight until it was quite high in the sky. It was still glowing red, even at that steep height. I was chatting with a nice couple from Arlington when I saw a speck moving from left to right about to “hit” the moon. It was tiny and I could barely make it out. I enlarged it on the back of my camera to see the 5 photo sequence. The moon was still hazy and soft, so the photo is not as sharp as I would have wished for. I was using a Canon 800mm.

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Could this be the last photo snapped of James “Whitey” Bulger?

As a Plymouth County sheriff’s vehicle pulled into the bowels of the Moakley Federal Courthouse on June 5, a shadowy figure took form for a split second as the dark, heavily tinted windows that kept him from view were suddenly bombarded with bright, early morning backlight. The backlit shaft of bright light was emanating from the waters of Boston Harbor. Using a Canon 800mm lens, I was able to fire off 4 photos in less than a second, then he was gone, disappearing into the blackness of the window tint. When I shot this I did not think, as I do now, that this would be the last shot I got of Mr. Bulger. Law enforcement personnel have taken steps to insure that he will not be visible again. The first, and most important step taken, is to drive him into a garage door closer to the water and more distance from the photographers, insuring that the shaft of backlight, that I mention above, does not line up with Bulger and the car windows. The second step is that the current vehicle  they are using, for Whitey’s transport, has darker window tint. Please see my photo below and catch bostonherald.com’s continuous coverage of this fascinating trial.

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