Editor's Note: Today is the last day on the job for Reporter News Editor Gintautas Dumcius, who has worked for the Reporter in various capacities for the last ten years. Gin's byline will continue to appear in the Reporter and at DotNews through his work at the State House News Service, where he will work as a full-time reporter beginning next week.- BF
One of my first assignments for the Dorchester Reporter involved being “embedded” on a Dorchester Day float. It was June 2004 and I was in the Dorchester Historical Society’s float as it motored through the rain and down the neighborhood’s main thoroughfare for the parade’s 100th anniversary. Read more
Dorchester Democrats have a new member of their party in their midst: The former chairman of the state party. John Walsh, the man who helped Deval Patrick win the gubernatorial race in 2006 and become the first Democratic governor in Massachusetts in 16 years, has moved into Lower Mills with his wife Donna. Read more
Apr. 24, 2014
Luisa Tavares fought back tears as she stood at the site of her son’s death reading the Fourth Station of the Cross, the one in which Jesus meets his mother on the way to his death on Calvary. But before Tavares began, Father Richard Conway told those assembled at Navillus Terrace that they were there to remember Junior DaVeiga and Andrew Tavares, two victims of violence in that very spot. Read more
Residents of the Woodhaven Street area remain in deep disagreement with state lawmakers and transportation officials over the siting of a commuter rail station between Blue Hill Avenue and Cummins Highway.
A meeting on April 10 did little to quell the discontent. State Rep. Russell Holmes, a Mattapan Democrat who supports the project, said another meeting has been scheduled for mid-May, with MBTA General Manager Beverly Scott expected to attend. Read more
Apr. 23, 2014
Roundly praised by councilors for her calm under pressure, her judiciousness and her humility, Dorchester District Court Chief Justice Rosalind Miller won plaudits from members of the Governor’s Council on Wednesday vetting her nomination for an appointment to the Superior Court bench.
At the request of Councilor Marilyn Devaney, Miller described how she took on a brutal kidnapping and rape case when she was a prosecutor and grew doubtful that the young victim had correctly identified her attacker. Miller requested a scientific test, which exonerated the defendant. Read more
A man was arraigned in Dorchester District Court today on charges he called in bomb threats that emptied UMass Boston's Wheatley Hall last Thursday and again on Tuesday.
In both cases, the building was evacuated but no actual bomb found.
Dean Beckford, 29, of Somerville, had bail set at $20,000, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports.
UMass officials identify him as a senior.
According to the DA's office: Read more
Apr. 18, 2014
Chris Lovett of BNN-TV's Neighborhood Network News interviews Charles Clemons, co-founder of TOUCH 106.1FM, a Grove Hall-based low-powered radio station that was shuttered on Thursday by federal officials because it operates without a license.
Apr. 18, 2014
Gov. Deval Patrick was “incredibly disappointed” by the raid conducted by U.S. Marshalls to shut down the unlicensed, underground Dorchester radio station Touch 106.1 FM, an outlet for black community voices in Boston. Patrick said his office tried to dissuade the U.S. Attorney’s office from taking the action it did to close the station. Read more
Apr. 17, 2014
Above, TOUCH 106.1FM operator Charles Clemons speaks about the federal raid on his unlicensed radio station. According to Clemons, US Marshals and FCC officials arrived at the station's offices today next to the Grove Hall Neighborhood Development Corporation and seized equipment belonging to the station, effectively taking it off the air. Read more
Dorchester’s own Patrick Brophy and Patrick Doherty organized a hockey tournament in Canton last Saturday that drew about 90 players across eight teams for the first-ever Peace Cup to raise funds for the Martin W. Richard Foundation. Each player wore a number 8 as a tribute to Martin.
The tournament was followed that evening with a party at the McKeon Post which raised more donations for Team MR8, the marathon squad that has —to date— gathered almost $1 million for the Richard foundation. Read more
Charlie Baker is running late. He walks into the Viet-AID community room at 5:53 p.m., 38 minutes after the gubernatorial meet-and-greet was supposed to start, a victim of evening traffic on Dorchester Avenue.
Thirty people have scattered themselves throughout the room, and as the he makes his way to the podium, he stops to shake hands, making sure to reach out to as many as he can. At six-foot-six, Baker towers over almost everybody there, except for one young man, whom he pulls close and says, tongue-in-cheek, “This guy’s tall.”
It’s a windy Monday night in April and Baker, a Swampscott Republican running for governor, is in Fields Corner. “Mr. Baker, welcome to Viet-AID,” Nam Pham, the Vietnamese-American development organization’s executive director, says in making the introduction to the crowd. “He used to be my boss,” Pham adds, referring to when Pham served as head of the Massachusetts Office of Refugees and Immigrants under Gov. William Weld. Read more
Brenna Galvin, 17, scored the game-winning goal this month to give her Charles River Blazers team its first-ever national championship in the 16-and-under division of USA Hockey. Galvin, a forward who wears No. 8 for the Blazers, backhanded in the winning shot in the final period of a showdown with the Marquette (Michigan) Sentinels— a team that had beaten the Boston girls, 5-1, earlier in the tournament. Read more
Put this race down as one to watch in the fall: The 12th Suffolk House election. After winning a special election last year, Dan Cullinane, a Dorchester Democrat, is running for a full two-year term. Several potential challengers who have pulled nomination papers have until April 29 to submit 150 voter signatures each to local elections officials. Corey Allen, a Mattapan activist, jumped into the race in December. If he and the others get on the ballot, a spirited race for the majority-minority seat will follow. Read more
Apr. 17, 2014
Mayor Martin Walsh celebrated his forty-seventh birthday on familiar turf last Thursday: At UMass Boston’s campus, he announced a $206,000 grant to university’s Venture Development Center and the completion of a research report on Boston’s growing elderly population. Read more
Twenty-three percent of occupied housing units in Boston have a person who is 60 years or older, according to a new report from the city’s Elderly Affairs Commission and UMass Boston’s Gerontology institute.
That’s a number likely to grow, as the Baby Boom generation nears old age and how to house them will be of concern to Mayor Marty Walsh and his successors. Read more
Apr. 17, 2014
Editor’s Note: A version of this article originally appeared in last week’s Reporter, but due to a technical error, it did not appear in its correct form. It is re-printed here in its entirety.
The Bottle Bill is the state’s single most successful recycling and litter prevention program. Since its passage over 30 years ago, more than 35 billion containers have been redeemed and recycled, and thus prevented from entering landfills or littering our streets. Read more
Apr. 17, 2014
In the midst of ramped up coverage of the Marathon and the Marathon bombing tragedy, a small group of Boston area artists gathered near the Boylston Street finish line on Tuesday evening to raise a contrarian view about the meaning of the slogan “Boston Strong” in the context of neighborhood violence.
Darrell Ann Gane-McCalla, a former Dorchester resident, was one of three artists to put together a show called “Boston Strong?” to spark discussion about the coverage of the Marathon bombings and the comparative lack of coverage of the victims of crime in the city’s neighborhoods, including Dorchester.
“One thing about my work is it is making commentary about how our culture is pretty violent in general with terrorism or domestic violence or street violence,” Gane-McCalla said.
Her piece, in which drawings of people covered newspaper articles of violent events, stood beside those of artists Shea Justice and Jason Pramas at the Community Church of Boston’s Lothrop Auditorium at 565 Boylston St., one block from the Boston Marathon finish line in Copley Square. Read more
Two elderly residents were seriously injured when the house at 27 Hansborough St. exploded around 9:20 p.m. on Wednesday, the Boston Fire Department reports.
Ten other residents were injured less seriously in the apparent natural-gas explosion - which blew the house off its foundation and led to its partial collapse. The resulting fire went to three alarms.
Residents of surrounding houses were evacuated. National Grid gave the OK to let them back around midnight.
Apr. 16, 2014
Four new lawmakers were sworn into the House of Representatives and one said goodbye Wednesday – rituals that have become commonplace this legislative session after a slew of resignations and special elections.
Two State House veterans who have worked on Beacon Hill for many years, and two newcomers took the oath of office after winning special elections earlier this month. The new members were sworn in by Gov. Deval Patrick during a ceremony attended by many former House lawmakers as well as Congressmen Stephen Lynch and Michael Capuano. Read more
It seemed at first that the rain – which had fallen softly throughout the afternoon, but threatened to pick up steam by mid-evening – might keep the crowd away.
But, as the 7 o’clock hour neared, neighbors began to stream into Garvey Park through the entrances on Neponset Avenue. They came in clusters and sometimes in larger packs with hoods and ball caps and scallys to shield against the elements. Some clutched the Stars and Stripes, which they then unfurled while bracing against the wind blowing in from Dorchester Bay.
On Tuesday, a year to the day after the Boston Marathon bombings, one Martin remembered and reflected on another. Mayor Martin Walsh knew Martin Richard, the eight-year-old Dorchester boy who was killed in the terrorist attacks. Read more
Apr. 15, 2014
As policymakers try to revive emergency medical care at the recently shuttered North Adams Regional Hospital, another Massachusetts hospital network recently had its rating outlook lowered to stable from positive, with analysts saying Steward Health Care System needs to continue restructuring. Read more
Jeff Gonyeau, a neighbor and parishioner at All Saints Church, played the bell chimes in the tower of All Saints Church in Peabody Square this afternoon. Gonyeau sounded the bells at 2:50 p.m. following a moment of silence that was observed across the city, region and nation in observance of the one-year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing.
Gonyeau played two hymns on the church's 11 bells using a chime in a wooden chamber nestled just one level beneath the bells. He played two hymns: "St. Columba", which is derived from the 25th Psalm ("The Lord is My Shepherd"); and "Land of Rest", a hymn that is often sung at memorial services. Both were selected by Gonyeau with the Richard family in mind.
Gonyeau is the same neighbor who stopped the clock in Peabody Square last year in the hours following the attack that killed young Martin and left his family wounded, including his little sister Jane. The clock became a focal point of mourning in the close knit Ashmont-Adams community where the Richard family live. Read more
The bells of All Saints Church will toll along with church bells across the city today in memory of the victims of the attack on the Boston Marathon— one year later. The bells will be rung at 2:50 p.m.
A moment of silence will be observed across the nation in memory of the victims at 2:49 p.m.
Volunteers have decorated the clock in Peabody Square will blue and yellow bunting in memory of Martin Richard. The clock became the site of a makeshift memorial to the Dorchester boy last year and was the scene of a quiet ceremony to mark the one-week anniversary of the bombings. No formal events are planned there today.
Neighbors will gather at Garvey Park on Neponset Avenue this evening at 7 p.m. for a candlelight vigil. The park was the scene of a similar vigil one year ago. Mayor Martin J. Walsh will attend this evening's vigil, which is expected to include prayers and bagpipes. Organizers say the event will go on rain or shine. Read more