Belfast 1972 a photographic exhibition by John Day Jr.
Jacob Edwards Library

Monday, Apr. 1, 9 am - 8 pm
The Jacob Edwards Library is pleased to present the photographs of John Day. A skilled photographer, John has revisited an earlier time when he was an English major, and persuing journalism as a career. The exhibit will run through the month of April and is accessible during library opening hours. A reception will be held on Thursday, April 4th from 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm. All welcome! Light refreshments will be providedby the Friends of Jacob Edwards Library.

In late June of 1972, John Day traveled to Northern Ireland with a college classmate, Richard Dunne, with press passes in hand to cover "The Troubles", as the conflict there was known. The student journalists experienced life first hand having a keen sense of where the action was. 

"On July 21st, we were three blocks away from the Oxford St. bus station when a bomb went off, killing six people. I photographed the horror and ended up hitching a ride in an ambulance to the Royal Victoria Hospital where I met a group of trauma surgeons. I visited the hospital the next few days working on a story for the Bulletin. Striking was the fact that I had seen relatively few reporters at the bus station; the vast majority had remained at the Europa Hotel, counting on the ones who had gone to give them the story. It occurred to me that being a physician might offer a more direct means of making a positive impact in the world."

And as a result of the experiences in Northern Ireland, John changed the direction of his career, completing his undergraduate degree in English and subsequently medical school, as well. After medical residency, he spent the next 33 years of his life as a Pulmonary and Critical Care doctor in Boston, Worcester, Putnam, and Providence, in that order. "Late at night, in my office at work or at home making phone calls to patients, I would look often at the few prints on my wall from Belfast, think of the extraordinary people I had met there, and hope I’d be given a chance one day to print them up again. Richard Dunne never got that chance, having died in a plane crash on Cape Cod in 1997. This exhibition is in his memory."


Sponsored by Friends of Jacob Edwards Library.
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