2017 BPPA Pictures of the Year

11 Feature Picture Story

1. Suzanne Kreiter / The Boston Globe The Last Refugee: Through the Closing Door


A year ago, eight Syrian families fled the violence of their homeland and immigrated to Greater Boston. They were among the last such refugees allowed into the United States as a result of the Trump administration’s multiple efforts to ban immigrants from certain majority Muslim countries, including Syria. To smooth the transition, Jewish Family Service of Metrowest launched the Syrian Refugee Humanitarian Project, working with Jewish synagogues, Islamic centers, doctors, dentists, businesses, and an army of volunteers to provide safety, hope and a new life to these immigrants. Out of the twelve families scheduled to arrive, only eight made it to America before the travel ban and Trump administration’s lowering of refugee numbers halted the process. The families shared their sometimes painful, sometimes joyous journey including their struggles to acclimate to the climate, both meteorological and political; their efforts to adapt to a new culture while preserving their heritage; their determination to achieve self-sufficiency; and the bonds of friendship they forged with people who practice a religion they were taught as children to hate.


2. Craig F. Walker / The Boston Globe A New Home, A New Hope

One of the last refugee families to be resettled in New England arrived in Manchester, N.H., on Thursday February 2, 2017. President Trump issued an executive order the previous week that barred any new refugees for 120 days, but they were allowed entrance due to a waiver for previously approved refugees. Sendegeya Bayavuge, a 52-year-old farmer, and six other members of the family had been living at a refugee camp in Uganda for two decades after escaping the violence in The Democratic Republic of Congo.


3. Jessica Rinaldi / The Boston Globe Along the Frozen Trail

For 25 years, intrepid mushers and their teams have completed the more than 200-mile icy loop that makes up the annual Can-Am Crown 250 sled dog race. The Can-Am includes three races: typically 30, 100, and 250 miles. But it’s the longest race that you’ll hear about on the car radio, with updates slipped between songs as the race unfolds almost entirely out of public view.


HM 1. Craig F. Walker / The Boston Globe Ring of Honor
Aleksandra Magdziak Lopes loves to win, but her April 7 fight was about family, and her preparation had been weighted with grief. Her husband and trainer, Wayne Lopes, had lost his son Manny on New Year’s Eve. The 32-year- old had battled depression and drugs. When fight night arrived, “I wanted to do well for Wayne,” Aleksandra says. Her win in the match at Twin River Casino in Lincoln, Rhode Island, came after eight rounds. As the referee raised Aleksandra’s arm in victory, “for a split second” she felt “on top of the world.” And then she felt relief. Near the end of the evening, Manny, a promising boxer whose career was derailed by hand injuries, was honored by the promoter. Aleksandra wept.


HM 2. Adam Glanzman / Freelance Ancient Tannery of Fes

Located within a UNESCO world heritage site, the Chouara tannery is considered to be among the oldest in the word still in operation. For over a thousand years leather goods have been produced and sold at this site using only traditional methods of production. Hides are processed and softened in wells that are filled with a white liquid, which is a mixture of pigeon feces, donkey urine, salt, and water. They are then beaten to a pulp by hand and foot before they are colored in surrounding vats which are filled with dyes. While it is extremely difficult to navigate the Medina in Fes, you can tell when you are nearing the tannery due to the distinct smell the site gives off.