, Salem, MA

Local News

April 26, 2013

Heard Around Town: A heartfelt response ... measured in bags of popcorn

SALEM — Half the city must have headed to Salem Willows on Sunday for E.W. Hobbs’ fundraiser for the Richard family of Dorchester.

Martin Richard is the little boy who was killed in a bomb blast at the Boston Marathon, which badly injured his mother and sister. His dad, Bill Richard, is from Salem and still has many friends here, including Charlie Hobbs.

In an effort to reach out at a time of unimaginable pain and loss, E.W. Hobbs donated all the proceeds from popcorn batch sales to a Salem Five fund for the family.

They sold almost 1,000 large batches or vouchers for future batches. Ryan Riley, popcorn popper extreme, cooked up 400 all by himself.

Together with donations and employee tips, the grand total came to an amazing $14,350.

In another nice gesture, small American flags were handed to customers, who planted them in a lawn nearby.

Golden years

What a nice time they had Sunday at Immaculate Conception Church, where the Rev. Timothy Murphy celebrated the 50th anniversary of his ordination.

Instead of three Masses, they held one at 10:30 a.m., during which both the Spanish and English language choirs performed. That night, they held a dinner at the Knights of Columbus.

Several priests attended, including the Rev. James Riley, who served at IC in the 1960s.

Murphy, who turned 75 last summer, is from the hard-scrabble streets of Somerville. He served in North Weymouth, Allston and Mattapan before coming to Salem 17 years ago as pastor.

The most amazing thing about Father Murphy?

“I’m not the first Timothy J. Murphy to be here,” he said.

Yup, a priest by that same name served at Immaculate Conception in 1904.

Land grab

This is a groundless rumor, but we heard that Mayor Kim Driscoll, the queen of regionalization, has another move up her sleeve.

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