Alan Lupo, a legendary local journalist who worked for the Boston Globe, the Boston Phoenix and the Boston Herald, has died. Bryan Marquard’s obit has been posted on the Globe’s Web site.
Lupo and his wife, Boston University journalism professor Caryl Rivers, have been fixtures on the Boston scene for many years. I didn’t know either of them well, but in my limited dealings with them they struck me as unusually good and decent people. I’ve never heard anyone say otherwise.
The last time I spoke with Lupo was a couple of years ago. He’d retired from the Globe and was writing an occasional column for the Salem News. I mentioned it to him, and he was delighted, telling me how much fun he was having practicing journalism at the community level.
I believe that this is the online interview Marquard refers to in which Lupo and Rivers talk about meeting while making a documentary about rats. The interview, by Henry Dane, was to publicize an appearance they made in 2005 at the Winthrop Public Library. One of Lupo’s quotes could serve as his epitaph:
We’ve always been interested in helping people redress their grievances. Being in journalism, you’ve got access to power. It may be the board of selectmen, it may be the governor, it may be somebody in the private sector. And if people are upset or angry for good reason … because their airport’s expanding or they’re putting highways through your backyard or there’s oil tanks and you don’t want ’em in your neighborhood … you’ve got a responsibility to cover those stories.
Lupo’s death is a loss for Boston and for journalism.
More: “There’s a lot to be said about Alan Lupo. All of it good. Much of it colorful as hell,” writes Clif Garboden at ThePhoenix.com. And what Garboden’s got to say is worth reading.