SIDE STREETS: Trying to do what John McAvoy did

December 25, 2016 - accent chair

FALL RIVER — John McAvoy wrote a mainstay for this journal for 22 years. He died in 2004. we knew him.

McAvoy lived his whole life in Fall River, and he spent a lot of his life handling a good theaters that once thrived in a city’s downtown.

He was a workable author who knew how to write a brief sentence, and he had a pinpoint memory of all that ever happened to him.

His columns were about Fall River in a initial half of a final century, when each tiny city had a possess look, a possess accent and a possess downtown struggling mightily for a large city look.

Before a standardization of America, if there was a hamburger corner in your city, we go around a universe and not find another place where a hamburgers tasted like they did during that place in your home town.

That was McAvoy territory, a tiny dear memories, a things that done Fall River a place that was not to be confused with other places, not even places like New Bedford, a city any alien could simply upset with Fall River.

Maureen Harrington was McAvoy’s lifelong friend. She used to tell my wife, associate contributor Deborah Allard, that McAvoy and we had a lot in common since we both favourite to tell a story and both of us desired Christmas. we was a cover dispatcher during Maureen Harrington’s funeral.

A Christmas mainstay McAvoy wrote in a 1980s was a long-lived favorite of readers, and has been reprinted many times in this newspaper.

The mainstay was about his girl in a 1920s, on Pine Street. McAvoy was a child of newcomer Irish parents, a special favorite of his mother’s, and a child given to meditative and dreaming.

The folks using AHA! in Fall River asked me to come to their Christmas eventuality final Thursday. They asked me to lay in a chair in a run of Government Center and review John McAvoy’s mainstay about being a child during Christmas in 1927.

I did, and we attempted to review it as best we could since it’s a good square of writing.

I frequency ever like my possess writing, though we mostly like other people’s

The mainstay is a outline of a approach McAvoy’s family lived, and generally of how they lived during Christmas.

McAvoy remembered a patterns a kerosene space heater done on a ceiling, a soda bread his mom baked and a travel adult Pine Street to Christmas morning Mass during Sacred Heart Church.

It’s a mainstay full of fact and adore and a honeyed clarity of loss.

If we get aged enough, your universe will die before we do.

McAvoy’s universe of magnificent downtown theaters died prolonged before he did, though he never forgot, never stopped singing that universe in his column.

He was a hometown child of a kind we don’t furnish too many of these days.

He was cooking in one place, knew each path of downtown, remembered a stories told in Irish brogues and area churches fervent with candles, swirled in incense, beaconing into a tenement night.

I did as good a pursuit reading his difference as we could, and we walked behind to a paper on a cold night, perplexing to remember each fact of all we saw.

That’s what John McAvoy did.

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