‘Street Doctor’ Shares Tales of Compassion

Newport Daily News

 

In more than 30 years with the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, Dr. James O’Connell has accumulated stories of homeless men and women that couldn’t be
made up.

On Saturday, the Newport native stood in front of about 40 people at the Newport Public Library and shared some of the stories, which are included in his book, “Stories from the
Shadows — Reflections of a Street Doctor.”

While he was attending medical school, O’Connell worked at The Pier restaurant in town until he was 34 years old. Then he served as senior medical resident in charge of the Bigelow Intensive Care Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital.

He didn’t plan the unexpected turn his career took after he walked into the Pine Street Inn, New England’s oldest and largest shelter with 700 beds. It helps the homeless men and
women of Boston find shelter, medical care, job training and more.

 

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