EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Opinion

June 25, 2013

Cheers and jeers for some local newsmakers

Cheers to Jeff Bauman, a Chelmsford native who lost his legs in the Boston Marathon bombings and has become a national symbol of American strength and courage. Bauman, 27, appeared at last week's Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce annual dinner, just two months after the Patriots Day terrorist attack that killed three and injured 264, including him. Whether at the Boston Garden cheering on his beloved Bruins or visiting with other bombing victims, Bauman's intrepid, resilient and optimistic attitude is that of a hero. He is why we are Boston Strong. He is why we will not forget those whose lives were forever altered by the actions of hate. We applaud you, Jeff, for all that you continue to do to help us all heal.

Cheers to Doc Rivers, Boston Celtics coach for nine seasons and soon-to-be head coach of the Los Angeles Clippers. While there's a lot not to like about how these negotiations went down and Rivers' silence throughout them, there is a lot to like about Rivers. He will go down as the third winningest coach of the C's, and brought us back the NBA championship for the 17th time in 2008. For the first time since the 1980s, the Celtics had cohesion, heart and passion for the sport and for Boston as well. Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen may have brought the character to the team, but it was Rivers who set the tone and temperature for the spirit. He was a gentlemen on and off the court and demanded the same of his players in a sport in which being classy isn't always as important as getting another ring. We hope there will be cheers for Danny Ainge as he picks a new leader for our team.

Jeers to the Boston media for its coverage of the slaying of Odin Lloyd and the alleged involvement of New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez. The extent of Hernandez' involvement undoubtedly needs to be revealed and quickly, but last week it seemed the Boston media's priority wasn't the facts but creating bad reality television. Flying helicopters over Hernandez' car as in the famous O.J. Simpson getaway chase in Al Cowlings' Ford Bronco was downright insulting. In the rush to be first, several media outlets also tripped over each other to report Hernandez was about to be arrested, only to be wrong in the end. When the search of Hernandez' North Attleboro home went quiet, the media then reported on the number of other outlets there standing around with nothing to report. Yes, we need to know about whatever Hernandez' involvement in this crime was, but it doesn't matter who gets the story first. It's about getting it right. It's about remembering there is a homicide victim here, and it's not just another celebrity episode of "CSI."

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