July 12, 1987 |
About this time a year ago, Jim McGowan was preparing to tackle a once-in- a-lifetime challenge. The 55-year-old Fort Washington resident, who has been a paraplegic since 1970, was about to attempt a 22-mile swim across the English Channel. McGowan failed to complete the swim Sept. 25, but the experience changed his life, he said recently. "Before the swim, I considered the attempt as an athletic challenge, something between me and the channel," McGowan said. "I saw it as one- dimensional.
January 19, 1998 |
'And I believe that our people will get to the promised land!" The radio blared the unmistakable voice of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. It was an odd sight for a Philadelphia streetscape: a misty January day, a lone black peddler who looked like a ragged Dick Tracy, manning a tiny cart of umbrellas, topped with a portable radio spewing speeches of the martyred civil-rights giant. All conveniently beside the glistening storefront window of the downtown Kitchen Kapers. Januaries bring sanguine thoughts of New Year's resolutions, nostalgic glances at the previous year, post-holiday blowout sales and a national nod to a slain black preacher who boycotted buses that flouted his dreams.
July 14, 1989
Yesterday was Harry R. Halloran's 87th birthday, and his son, Richard, took him out to dinner. We only wish we could have been with them to wander down memory lane a bit. It was Harry R. Halloran who ran the Philadelphia division of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Works Progress Administration. Thanks to Halloran's firm hand and compassionate spirit, the WPA repaved 310 miles of roads in the city, built much of the airport, employed 2,000 workers building recreation facilities, remodeled and repaired most of the city's police stations, and restored more than eight miles of nature trails.
March 8, 2010 |
All around the region yesterday people went outside to celebrate a sunny day when the temperature hit 56 degrees. Ilya Bondarenko and Sofia Udovenko, both 26 and living in Center City, made a wooden bench look incredibly comfortable. They spent the afternoon snoozing and snuggling in Fairmount Park's Azalea Garden. It was too early for shrubs to bloom, but not the human spirit after more than 70 inches of snow and lots of cold weather this winter. "We are very happy," Bondarenko said.
January 27, 1987 |
Jim Abbott has the sort of selective memory that is well-suited for someone who has spent his life minimizing the effects of a handicap. Asked about his childhood, Abbott recalls no taunts from unthinking playmates or lack of acceptance from coaches who must have been taken aback by the sight of a one- handed boy attempting to play baseball. "I never really thought about (his handicap)," said Abbott, a 19-year-old sophomore pitcher for the University of Michigan who last night received the Most Courageous Athlete award at the 83rd annual Philadelphia Sports Writers Association dinner at the Hyatt Cherry Hill.
May 19, 1988
A CLEAN SWEEP FOR DC33 Congratulations to District Council 33's newly elected President James Sutton and to his coalition - Ann Cohen, Ronald Mauldin and Leonard Tilghman - to name a few. You've overcome an enity of long-standing reign, you've rekindled the hopes of many of your constituents. The promise to "restore accountability to the union and equal voice" rings of great statesmanship. In 14 years we've been exposed to enough self-centeredness and arrogance. Negotiate with integrity!
April 19, 1996 |
The old man stands numbed and weeping in the lonely silence of the forest where the Gestapo executed his father and hundreds of other Jews more than half a century ago. He is a survivor of the Holocaust, but he is set apart by something very special that has survived with him. Yale Strom's extraordinary The Last Klezmer is a deeply affecting documentary that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit in the wake of unimaginable barbarity, and...
October 5, 1992 |
AIDS kills. It destroys livelihoods. But it need not destroy the spirit. That's what baritone William Parker proved so movingly in his AIDS Quilt Songbook 1992 recital Friday in Princeton University's Richardson Auditorium. The singer reportedly has lost 35 pounds and suffers from Kaposi's sarcoma, an AIDS-related cancer. Moreover, his highly successful career in opera, oratorio and recital has ended; management, fearing his illness might cause cancellations, no longer books engagements for him. Yet, there he stood, singing songs of varied quality that he has asked composers (famous and not-so-famous)
December 30, 1990 |
In 1958, the Jose Limon Dance Company toured Europe. Of all the countries it visited, Poland was the most ravaged by the effects of World War II; only its theaters had been rebuilt. When Limon returned to the United States, he wrote of the Poles: "These people are vital and undefeated. They are without rancor, without hatred. They have a heroic serenity. I found it inspiring. I'm going to do a dance about it. In the ruins, I found a dance. It will concern itself with the nightmarish destruction and heroism.
April 4, 1992
A commemoration marking the death of Walt Whitman 100 years ago was held Sunday in Camden with a trouping of dignitaries and scholars through the neighborhood where he lived at the end of his life, just off Mickle Boulevard. It continued on to Whitman's final resting place in Harleigh Cemetery off Haddon Avenue. It was just one part of a celebration of Whitman that will go on all year in Philadelphia, New York, England, Japan and elsewhere. And why not celebrate? Whitman, after all, never missed a chance to celebrate himself while alive.