Posts Tagged ‘Boston Herald’

It was 7 years ago today that Christine Desrochers-Broderick, clinging to the roof of her submerged car, was rescued by off-duty Somerville firefighter Michael Marino. It was not long thereafter that all three of us were contacted by The Weather Channel, to “star” in their (then) new show, Twist of Fate. Here is my blog dispatch from that day.
I came upon this dramatic scene after completing news coverage of a long, hot, then rainy immigrant rally in Boston for the Boston Herald. The police scanner was crackling something about a person or persons stuck under the Assembly Square underpass at Mystic Ave. I drove to an area near the courthouse where I saw troopers feverishly trying to enter the water and gain access to the serious situation that was unfolding. I noticed a young couple sitting on the curb and I turned to see that their car’s roof, about an inch of it, was still visible. Within a few minutes the tunnel was almost 80% filled with water, 10 to 15 feet of water is my guess. I had to kneel down to see what was unfolding about 70 yards into the tunnel. There I could see a woman atop of what appeared to be her car. I returned to my car to get my 800mm telephoto lens, snapped a few photos there and then ran like hell to the other side of the underpass. That is where I saw troopers Joe Kalil and Stephen Barnes and Somerville firefighters Jack Betkwith, LT Michael Anzalone and off-duty firefighter Michael Marino. I positioned myself on McGrath Highway above the rescue and pointed my 70-200 mm lens through the chain link fence. The troopers and the firefighters worked in unison to perfection. The only problem was, would my lens stay dry enough in the rain to capture the rescue? I borrowed the corner of a passerby’s dry shirt to use to clean my lens since my clothes were drenched. Lucky for me that the man didn’t think I was nuts when I asked him: “may I use your shirt to clean my lens?” Then, out the rescuers popped with one cold and wet, Christine Broderick, as they guided her through the water that now contained mostly raw sewage. Please see 4 of my photos below and my Herald photo gallery can be seen here and O’Ryan Johnson’s story
here.


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Boston fire Lt. Steven Minehan died 23 years ago today.

On June 24, 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 while searching for other  firefighters who had become trapped. I had been a staff photographer at the Boston Herald for almost 15 months that night when, police/fire radio scanners broke the silence of what had been a quiet evening. John Landers Jr., then Herald night desk photo editor, and I heard the initial call for help from Minehan as 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. She is a very kind and considerate soul. RIP Lt. Minehan. My photos from that night are seen below. The photo of Lt. Minehan, at bottom of page, is courtesy of Bill Noonan. 

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I photographed several Boston storms that day, 6 years ago. I did not go out to the hard hit areas of western Massachusetts, but I did see some tremendous lightning in and around Boston. The top two photos were snapped between 9-10pm from Medford. The bottom photo was snapped in the mid-afternoon from East Boston. The Coast Guard station lightning bolt looks totally fake, or “photoshopped.” Lucky for me, I had another camera rolling video (at bottom) of the same strike.

CLICK here for lightning video of same photo

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In 1997 I was sent with Boston Herald columnist Peter Gelzinis to cover the 2nd anniversary of the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal building. In 2001 we returned to the bombing site to provide coverage of the moment that Oklahoma City bomber/murderer Timothy McVeigh was executed (in Indiana). While we were there, on both trips, Peter introduced the Denny family to our readers and to me. Peter had met the Dennys only hours after the actual bombing when he and Herald photographer Matthew West were dispatched to the horrific scene. In 1995 Rebecca Denny, then age 2 years, and her 3 year old brother Brandon Denny, were severely injured in the explosion while they were attending the building’s day care center. On June 11, 2001, the day that Timothy McVeigh was executed in Terre Haute Indiana, many victims and relatives, including the Dennys, marked this moment by returning to the now beautiful grounds and memorial of the Murrah federal building’s footprint. Here, beginning with a 1997 black & white photo of The Survivor Tree, are some of my photos from my two memorable trips. On a personal note, it is heartening to see that from senseless tragedy, good and decent people rise from the ashes and quickly turn the narrative positive. Also, I feel blessed to have met the Denny family.

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1997 photo of Rebecca Denny, then age 4 years, and me, as Peter Gelzinis, off camera, interviews Rebecca's brother Brandon, at their Oklahoma home.

1997 photo of Rebecca Denny, then age 4 years, and me, as Peter Gelzinis, off camera, interviews Rebecca’s brother Brandon, at their Oklahoma home.

Rebecca Denny, age 11 years, is seen at the Oklahoma City National Memorial, moments before the execution, in Indiana, of Timothy McVeigh.

Rebecca Denny, age 8 years, is seen at the Oklahoma City National Memorial, moments before the execution, in Indiana, of Timothy McVeigh.

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Brandon Denny, age 9 years, also known a "Miracle Boy" due to his improbable survival living against all odds after having a hole the size of a fist punched thru his brain in the Murrah Federal Bldg bombing, prays at a chair that symbolizes his dead friend Chase Smith who was in the same day care in the bldg but did not survive.

Brandon Denny, age 9 years, also known a “Miracle Boy” due to his improbable survival living against all odds after having a hole the size of a fist punched thru his brain in the Murrah Federal Bldg bombing, prays at a chair that symbolizes his dead friend Chase Smith who was in the same day care in the bldg but did not survive.

The Denny family, moments before the McVeigh execution.

The Denny family, moments before the McVeigh execution.

 

Seconds before the execution of Timothy McVeigh, Deb Ferrell-Lynn, who lost her cousin Susan ferrell, hugs Constance Favorite, who lost her daughter LaKesha Levy.

Seconds before the execution of Timothy McVeigh, Deb Ferrell-Lynn, who lost her cousin Susan ferrell, hugs Constance Favorite, who lost her daughter LaKesha Levy.

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Neil Fingleton, “Game of Thrones” actor and one of the tallest people in the world at 7 feet 7 inches, died yesterday at the age of 36, reportedly of a heart attack. See Worcester Telegram story here. In 1999, I spent several weeks with Neil as he completed his senior season on Worcester’s Holy Name High School basketball team. I had heard about Neil and wanted to do a picture story/photo essay about him for the Boston Herald. I took my idea and petitioned his coach, Worcester sport’s legend J.P. Ricciardi, who later became a Major League Baseball executive. I met with Coach Ricciardi at a coffee shop in Worcester. He made it clear that he did not want Neil’s height to be exploited. I was given a thumbs up to meet Neil and to get his blessing on the project. He was all in. Neil was a bit shy at first, but we quickly took a liking to each other. The last time I spoke to him, he had called me at the Herald in 2007 or 2008 and alerted me to his new career in the entertainment business. He said he was traveling to Boston to promote a show he was in, and asked if I wanted to cover the event for the Herald. We never connected. Below are my photographs from my time with Neil. May he rest in peace. 

Two years ago 18 year old Neil Fingleton traveled to Worcester,MA. from his home in Durham, England to learn a game he had never played. In several days he will have come full circle when he announces his decision to accept a full Basketball scholarship to the University of North Carolina.

Running sprints in the hallways of Holy Name High in Worcester into the night…

Legendary Worcester area athlete and former Celt’s player Togo Palazzi works with Neil. Togo says about the “work in progress”, “it’s a labor of love” (working with Neil) .

“Doin’ Steps” is the term affectionately known for the exercise that was developed by school strength coach Tony Elia.

In his room which has a taste of home Union Jack flag on the wall, hours after deciding on a full scholarship to University of North Carolina, Neil receives congratulations from a friend. 

Hours before choosing UNC over Wake Forest, Neil consults with Asst. Holy Name hoop coach Tom Clark (Left) and head coach J.P Ricciardi.

Long hours at the gym have paid off for Neil as he dunks during practice.

Going thru the workout developed by Holy Name strength coach Tony Elia, teammates of Neil’s come up short during a flexibility drill.

Neil Fingleton going thru the training paces with fellow teammate A.J. at Holy Name High in Worcester.

Neil relaxes with friends in the Holy Name Cafeteria hours before the first game of the season. 

Before his 1st game of the Holy Name High School schedule, Neil gathers his thoughts alone in the locker room.

1st game of the year vs Worcester South.

Neil leaves school the day after making his choice to accept a full scholarship at University of North Carolina.

 

 

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I was a witness to many memorable events in 2016, from several nasty building fires, to extreme weather, to a tragic trench collapse. Here are some of these moments. Photos taken on and off my Boston Herald news photographer shift. Thank you to the Herald, and to my subjects, many of whom are first responders.

December 16, 2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters battle fire and ice during this morning’s frigid 6 alarm fire in Boston’s Charlestown neighborhood.

ABOVE: 04/28/2016-Boston,MA. A Boston firefighter stretches a hose toward a large brush fire in the Fenway section of the city, at the rear of City of Boston’s fire alarm office.

ABOVE: October 21, 2016-Boston,MA. Construction worker Steven Smith pleads for help from others shortly after two workers were buried under water and soot as a trench collapse and water leak filled the hole they were working in on Boston’s Dartmouth St., Friday afternoon. The two workers were killed.

ABOVE: 05/26/2016-Boston,MA. Students peer at some of the 410 Charcoal drawings of the graduating seniors of Boston Latin’s Class of 2016, as they hang in the halls of the school. Philip Sossou, a graduating senior from Roslindale, started working on the drawings in February

ABOVE: 07/14/2016. The evening commute, Boston Logan style.

ABOVE: 05/19/2016-Boston,MA. The ocean liner Anthem of the Seas enters Boston Harbor, just after Thursday morning’s sunrise.

ABOVE: 04/21/2016-Winthrop,MA The sunrises as the moon sets over the city of Boston.

ABOVE: 04/02/2016-Winthrop,MA. Rooftop arrival.

ABOVE: 02/24/2016-Boston,MA Boston EMS’ Manuel Tejeda helps the victim of a car accident on D St.

ABOVE: 07/26/2016-Boston,MA. A Boston firefighter takes a breather at Tuesday afternoon’s multiple alarm fire at 87 Sawyer Ave. in Dorchester.

ABOVE: 08/09/2016- Sammy, of Winthrop,MA

ABOVE: 06/04/2016. Belmont,MA A turkey strolls along Belmont Hill.

ABOVE: 07/26/2016-Boston,MA. A tenant of 87 Sawyer Ave. in Dorchester, arrives home in tears, as her home burns Tuesday afternoon.

ABOVE: 06/01/2016-Winthrop,MA The very large Antonov 124 cargo plane, soars over Boston.

ABOVE: 09/08/2016-Winthrop,MA A Hummingbird Moth is seen tonight, refueling on some plants.

ABOVE: 07/20/2016-Boston,MA Boston Light frames tonight’s Super Moon rising.

ABOVE: 12/14/2016-Winthrop,MA. A high altitude airliner flying from Newark to Stockholm flies through a thin layer of haze as tonight’s moon rises. The plane was traveling at 605 knots and at 32,000′.

ABOVE: 10/15/2016-Winthrop,MA. An airliner, departing from Boston’s Logan airport, frames tonight’s Super Moon

ABOVE: 03/30/2016-Boston,MA Morning departure from Boston’s Logan airport as the moon sets in the background.

ABOVE: 09/16/2016-Boston,MA. The full Harvest moon rises over Boston Harbor’s Graves Light Friday evening.

ABOVE: 11/23/2016-Boston,MA. A very happy Paulina Lopez, age 10 years, is released from Franciscan ChildrenÕs in Brighton after being treated for a debilitating case of Acute Flaccid Myelitis. She heads home to celebrate Thanksgiving with her family. With her is her physical therapist Marcela Donat

ABOVE: 11/30/2016-Boston,MA. A man navigates Knapp St.in Boston’s Chinatown neighborhood after a water main break flooded the area, shortly after 5:30am Wednesday morning. The Boston Water & Sewer Commission was in the process of shutting down the leak at 6am.

ABOVE: 12/03/2016-Cambridge,MA. Cambridge and surrounding fire departments battle a ten alarm fire on and around Berkshire street, Saturday afternoon.

ABOVE: 12/03/2016-Cambridge,MA. Cambridge and surrounding fire departments battle a ten alarm fire on and around Berkshire street, Saturday afternoon.

ABOVE: 07/21/2016-Boston,MA. Boston firefighters work at the scene of a 6-alarm fire on Bunker Hill St. in Charlestown, Thursday afternoon.

ABOVE: 12/06/2016-Malden,MA. Firefighters work at a 3 alarm fire at 381 Medford St. late Tuesday morning.

ABOVE: 03/05/16-Boston,MA A worker from a restoration/cleaning company is seen inside a fire-damaged apartment at 380 Talbot Ave. Saturday morning, hours after a fire killed a resident there.

ABOVE: 07/23/2016-Winthrop,MA A severe thunderstorm exits the coast at Winthrop Shore Drive after doing damage to homes, cars, and many trees.

ABOVE: 11/23/2016-Boston,MA. Boston Police, Fire, and EMS personnel work to make comfortable, and then to eventually rescue, this distraught man threatening to jump from a ledge at the MIT Frat house at Commonwealth Ave., and Hereford St., Wednesday afternoon.

ABOVE: 08/14/2016-Winthrop,MA A split-second burst of several lightning bolts is seen over Graves Light during an early morning thunderstorm.

ABOVE: 12/15/2016-Stoneham,MA. Firefighters work at the scene of a 2 alarm fire at 154 North St., late Thursday morning.

ABOVE: 12/16/2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters battle fire and ice during this morning’s frigid 6 alarm fire in Boston’s Charlestown neighborhood.

ABOVE: 03/18/2016. Winthrop,MA. Winter surfing.

ABOVE: 03/26/2016-Boston,MA. Mayor Martin J. Walsh poses for a photo with 6 year old twins Aiden, at left, and Austin, prior to the annual Sisters of Saint Joseph Easter Egg Roll in Brighton, Saturday morning.

ABOVE: 11/17/2016-East Boston. Birds of a feather.

ABOVE: 02/14/2016-Winthrop,MA. Seasmoke rises above the Atlantic as Boston temperatures dipped to several degrees fahrenheit below zero Sunday morning.

ABOVE: 12/16/2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters battle fire and ice during this morning’s frigid 6 alarm fire in Boston’s Charlestown neighborhood.

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Frigid temperatures and a dangerous windchill hampered Boston firefighters yesterday at the scene of a 6-alarm fire. The building housed 11 residents and a laundromat, which was featured in the Ben Affleck movie, “The Town. My photos were part of my coverage as a staff news photographer at the Boston Herald.
Also, two Go-Fund-Me webpages have been established —-> here & here.

December 16, 2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters battle fire and ice during this morning’s frigid 6 alarm fire in Boston’s Charlestown neighborhood.

 

 

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My Photos & Thoughts on the Deadly Boston Trench Collapse

While on the 7th hour of my Friday shift as a Boston Herald staff news photographer, I was summoned to  Beacon Hill for photo coverage of the Herald’s Home of the Week. I started that way from Melnea Cass Boulevard, near Northeastern University. While driving on Tremont St., approaching the traffic lights at Dartmouth St., I noticed the leading edge of what appeared to look like an ocean tide encroaching on a beach. This torrent of water, rolling down Dartmouth St., was quite strong. There was no audio from my police/fire radios regarding an event/emergency of this type, but I stopped anyway thinking this was newsworthy and might make for interesting photos.  I parked, still thinking that I was going to photograph a short-lived apparent water main break. It was then that I heard police sirens. I started to take photos, but when I came upon the scene something seemed different. A police sergeant told me to leave the street, and the faces of workers, neighbors, police, and shortly thereafter Boston firefighters, told a story of anguish and deep concern. It was shortly thereafter that I learned that one, and then another worker was presumed trapped. Steve Smith, a construction laborer working close by, and who was on a break when he heard screaming, sprung into action as he tried to reach the trapped workers. He tried to enter the hole but dangerous conditions forced him back. I retreated to the sidewalk and watched, then photographed, as he was reaching into the water to attempt to find the street plates covering part of the trench. On his hands and knees he finally found the part of the heavy plates where a chain can be affixed, to then lift with a backhoe. Smith seemed to pause for a split second, as exhaustion and grief overwhelmed him. Boston firefighters used sticks with hooks on the end to try and hook the workers, but to no avail. A very sad day. My photos appeared on page one and inside the October 22, 2016 issue of the Boston Herald.

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October 21, 2016-Boston,MA. A stunned Mirtha Colon, a resident of 10 Dartmouth St. apt B, watches firefighters scurry into position in the first moments after a trench collapse and water leak killed two workers Friday afternoon on Boston's Dartmouth street. CREDIT Boston Herald staff photo by Mark Garfinkel. NO BOSTON (Boston OUT) No sales No Mags

A stunned Mirtha Colon, a resident of 10 Dartmouth St. apt B, watches firefighters scurry into position in the first moments after a trench collapse and water leak killed two workers Friday afternoon on Boston’s Dartmouth street.

October 21, 2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters scurry into position in the first moments after a trench collapse and water leak killed 2 workers on Boston's Dartmouth street, Friday afternoon. CREDIT Boston Herald staff photo by Mark Garfinkel. NO BOSTON (Boston OUT) No sales No Mags

October 21, 2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters scurry into position in the first moments after a trench collapse and water leak killed 2 workers on Boston's Dartmouth street, Friday afternoon. CREDIT Boston Herald staff photo by Mark Garfinkel. NO BOSTON (Boston OUT) No sales No Mags

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October 21, 2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters and workers scurry into position in the first moments after a trench collapse and water leak killed at least one worker and injured another Friday afternoon on Dartmouth street.. Staff photo by Mark Garfinkel

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October 21, 2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters and workers scurry into position in the first moments after a trench collapse and water leak killed at least one worker and injured another Friday afternoon on Dartmouth street.. Staff photo by Mark Garfinkel

October 21, 2016-Boston,MA. Firefighters and workers scurry into position in the first moments after a trench collapse and water leak killed at least one worker and injured another Friday afternoon on Dartmouth street.. Staff photo by Mark Garfinkel

 

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My Boston brush with The Greatest, Muhammad Ali.

I photographed Muhammad Ali on the night of November 1, 1994, at Boston’s Park Plaza Hotel. I met the Boston Herald’s late/great boxing scribe, George Kimball in Ali’s room. His wife Lonnie was there, as was photographer and Ali biographer and confidant Howard Bingham and his mom, Willie, who I photographed hugging Ali. I did NOT know at the time that Howard was an accomplished/award-winning photographer. When it was time to leave, I gave the camera to Howard and told him where the button was to push and that the camera was pre-focussed. Everybody in the room laughed as Howard said: “I think I can handle it” 🙂

Rest in peace Muhammad Ali.

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George Kimball with Muhammad Ali, and the Boston Herald sports back page of November 2, 1994.

The champ and I pose for a photo taken by Howard Bingham.

The champ and I pose for a photo taken by Howard Bingham.

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The oil tanker Hugli Spirit, anchored in Boston Harbor, alerted the Coast Guard to a medical crisis on board late this morning. The call, as heard on a police scanner, came into Boston police as “the captain of the ship is reportedly having a heart attack”. Boston Fire Dept., the U.S. Coast Guard, Boston EMS, Massachusetts State Police, Environmental Police, Winthrop Police and the Boston Police Harbor Unit all sent boats and personnel, as two ambulances waited on Drydock Ave. First responders borded the ship via a long ladder at the ship’s side. No word on the man’s condition. Below are my photos, mostly made with an 1140mm telephoto lens. Photos made on my shift as a Boston Herald photographer.

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The oil tanker Hugli Spirit is seen anchored in Boston Harbor with police and fire rescue boats around it, and EMS personnel climbing outer stairs to the ship, as a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The oil tanker Hugli Spirit is seen anchored in Boston Harbor with police and fire rescue boats around it, and EMS personnel climbing outer stairs to the ship, as a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The oil tanker Hugli Spirit is seen anchored in Boston Harbor with police and fire rescue boats around it, as a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The oil tanker Hugli Spirit is seen anchored in Boston Harbor with police and fire rescue boats around it, as a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The oil tanker Hugli Spirit is seen anchored in Boston Harbor with police and fire rescue boats around it, as a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The oil tanker Hugli Spirit is seen anchored in Boston Harbor with police and fire rescue boats around it, as a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The Boston Police Marine Unit is seen, in foreground, as it left he oil tanker Hugli Spirit, at top of photo, after a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. The Boston Police Marine Unit is seen, in foreground, as it left he oil tanker Hugli Spirit, at top of photo, after a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. From left, The Boston Police Marine, a Boston Fire rescue boat, and a U.S. Coast Guard boat are seen after leaving the oil tanker Hugli Spirit, after a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship and is in the Fire Rescue boat, the middle boat here. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. From left, The Boston Police Marine, a Boston Fire rescue boat, and a U.S. Coast Guard boat are seen after leaving the oil tanker Hugli Spirit, after a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. A person was taken off the ship and is in the Fire Rescue boat, the middle boat here. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. A Boston Fire rescue boat speeds back to shore with a patient after taking a sick man off the oil tanker Hugli Spirit after a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. A Boston Fire rescue boat speeds back to shore with a patient after taking a sick man off the oil tanker Hugli Spirit after a medical incident was reported on board, near the noon hour Friday. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. A man suffering from an ailment, who had been aboard the oil tanker Hugli Spirit, is seen on a gurney after Boston EMS, fire and police Marine Unit officials, along with the Coast Guard and Environmental police took him off the ship, to a dock, and then to a waiting ambulance. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. A man suffering from an ailment, who had been aboard the oil tanker Hugli Spirit, is seen on a gurney after Boston EMS, fire and police Marine Unit officials, along with the Coast Guard and Environmental police took him off the ship, to a dock, and then to a waiting ambulance. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. A man suffering from an ailment, who had been aboard the oil tanker Hugli Spirit, is seen on a gurney after Boston EMS, fire and police Marine Unit officials, along with the Coast Guard and Environmental police took him off the ship, to a dock, and then to a waiting ambulance. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

04/29/2016-Boston,MA. A man suffering from an ailment, who had been aboard the oil tanker Hugli Spirit, is seen on a gurney after Boston EMS, fire and police Marine Unit officials, along with the Coast Guard and Environmental police took him off the ship, to a dock, and then to a waiting ambulance. Staff Photo by Mark Garfinkel

 

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