6 residents displaced, one in critical condition following major fire in New Bedford

Early Tuesday morning at 7:37am multiple 911 calls were received for a reported structure fire at 145-147 West Hill Rd in New Bedford. Upon arrival, Firefighters were faced with heavy fire on the first floor extending into the second floor and attic space.

The crews of E1, E7, E8, L1, L4 along with Command Units 1 and 2 made an aggressive interior attack on this rapidly spreading fire and ensured all occupants were out. Additionally, Engine 9 was dispatched early due to the extent of the fire.

The six tenants from this four unit building were able to escape prior to Fire Department arrival due to working smoke detectors. Four of the tenants were treated and transported to St. Luke’s hospital by New Bedford EMS. One patient is in critical condition at St. Luke’s Hospital ICU.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by New Bedford Fire Investigators along with the State Fire Marshals Office. New Bedford Police, New Bedford Emergency Management, and the Providence Canteen also assisted during this incident. The American Red Cross is assisting six displaced residents. Three pets are accounted for and one remains missing.

Carlos Pimental Felix was live at the scene.




Last week New Bedford residents can register to vote in the preliminary election looms

Looking to cast your vote in the 2023 New Bedford preliminary election? Friday, September 22nd is the last day you can register to vote! There are three ways you can register, you can do it online, in person, or by mail.

Online:

If you have a signature on file with the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, you can register online. You can also pre-register, update your address, update your name, and change your political party designation.

Voter registration forms submitted online must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on the date of the voter registration deadline.

In person:

In Massachusetts, you can register to vote in-person at:

• Your local town clerks, election commission, and Boards of Registrars.
• The Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth Elections Division.
• The Secretary of the Commonwealth’s regional offices.

Voter registration forms completed in-person are valid on the day that they are signed.

By mail:

You can register or pre-register to vote with a mail-in voter registration form. Print, fill out, and sign the voter registration form. Mail the signed form to your local election office. Your voter registration form must be postmarked by the voter registration deadline.

If you are registering to vote in Massachusetts for the first time, you should include a copy of identification that shows your name and address with your form. If you don’t include a copy of your ID, you may need to show it the first time you vote.

CLICK HERE to see a full timeline with important dates of the New Bedford election.




New Bedford Firefighter’s son Porter’s spirits high while battling rare, aggressive brain cancer

8-year-old “Porter G” is fighting a rare and aggressive brain cancer and can use some help from south coast residents. His father who is a New Bedford Firefighter recently created a “GoFundMe” to help pay for the extremely expensive costs of the medication they need. Please CLICK HERE to get to the GoFundMe and let’s all rally together and help this child fighting cancer.

A message from the family,

Hi everyone. We wanted to post an update on Porter and also have a new financial need that we thought could use a separate fundraiser.

For those that don’t know, our now 8yo son Porter was diagnosed with a rare(mostly) childhood brain cancer, called DIPG (diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma) in January. It has a median survival rate of 11 months. Only 10% of kids are alive after 1 year. There is no cure and it can not be removed through surgery. There are some promising drugs and trials going on right now but those are the only option for hundreds of kids. Experimental medicines with unknown outcomes.

In July after a few months of improving health and symptoms, Porters condition worsened almost overnight. We spent a night in the ER and then 3 days inpatient at Boston Children’s Hospital. After multiple tests and a long MRI we were told Porter’s tumor had progressed significantly and he only had a few weeks to live.

With this new diagnosis, he was removed from the clinical trial he was on and we started Hospice care at home. Not wanting to just give up we started looking for something, ANYTHING, we could possibly do. Besides radiation, there are NO treatments or medications approved to treat DIPG so without being on a clinical trial, we do not have access to any drugs through traditional means.

After doing tons of research and talking to other families, we can get some medications through a third party but the cost is out of pocket. Insurance is not an option. Our fist order for 3 months worth was $12,000.

Porter is still fighting. The doctors were wrong about the timeline. His latest MRI showed that the tumor is still growing but at a slower rate than they thought. There’s a chance that these medications are slowing things down and with time and maybe higher doses, could give us a shot. If this continues we will need to order more medication. At $4,000 a month we’ll be out of money quickly. This is literally our only option currently, and we will not give up.

A gigantic thank you to everyone that has already donated or helped in any way. Your support through all of this has been incredible.

The Guillemette family

CLICK HERE</font to go to the GoFundMe.




First time homebuyer? New Bedford event offers down payment assistance, FHA-backed loans, more

First-time homebuyer? You might want to attend this first-time homebuyer “house party” event at the Andrea McCoy Rec Center in New Bedford! The event will be on Wednesday, September 20th, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and the address is 181 Hillman Street.

Individuals and families are being encouraged to attend to familiarize themselves with the many resources being made available, including housing counseling, financial education, down payment assistance, and FHA-backed loans.

This event will be hosted by Mayor Jon Mitchell, other elected officials, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development New England Regional Administrator Juana Matias, the City’s Office of Housing and Community Development Director Joshua Amaral, housing counseling agencies, and state housing partners.

There is no pre registration required and the event is free!





The fascinating, controversial story behind the hidden New Bedford tombstone of Daddy Grace

Nestled away in the back corner of the Pine Grove Cemetery in New Bedford, Massachusetts stands a rather impressive mausoleum, statue, and plaque. This stands in remembrance of Marcelino Manuel da Graça, otherwise known as Charles Manuel “Sweet Daddy” Grace.

Daddy Grace was born on January 25th in the Cape Verde Islands. Interestingly, there is no verifiable information to confirm his exact birth year, although most sources either state 1881 or 1884.

In May of 1902 his family set sail aboard a ship named “The Freeman” and he arrived in America at the port of New Bedford, Massachusetts. 17 years later in 1919 he quit his job as a railway cook and built the first “House of Prayer” in West Wareham, Massachusetts at the cost of $39.


Photo by Steven Richard.

In December of 1921, a regular meeting place in New Bedford was organized on 357 Kempton Street. Throughout the 1920’s and 30’s Daddy Grace traveled extensively across the country holding tent meetings, healing services, and mass baptisms which were attended by the thousands.

Many people became members of the House of Prayer after these spiritual services because of the “healing power of Christ” being demonstrated. He was able to build an organization of 350 “Houses of Prayer” with a national membership of over 3 million followers.

His ability to step off the boat onto the Port of New Bedford with absolutely nothing in his name, and become an extremely wealthy man building over 350 churches with over 3 million followers is absolutely remarkable.

But unfortunately there is an aspect to his story which many have a major issue with.


Photo by Steven Richard.

Many would flat out tell you that “Sweet Daddy Grace” really was a cult leader who would enrich himself from his followers of the “Houses of Prayer”. It is rumored that he built a large wealthy empire by selling things like “plots in heaven” and “drinks that would cure anything” to his followers.

He made so much money that he actually bought the largest apartment building in New York City.

According to reporting from Southcoast Today, he faced some legal battles regarding tax evasion, IRS investigations, and even human trafficking which all make sense in regards to how he built his wealth. Although I don’t believe it is necessary to dig into the details of his legal issues, I figured it is important to note as it gives credibility to the rumors and stories surrounding him.

The story of Marcelino Manuel da Graça is a fascinating one to say the least. A poor kid that sailed to New Bedford from Cape Verde and became a wildly rich and famous cult leader that bought the tallest apartment in New York City. His life story has “Netflix Documentary” written all over it.


Photo by Steven Richard.




NOAA projecting New Bedford could get whalloped by tropical storm this weekend

Hurricane Lee is heading north up the Atlantic ocean towards the New England area. While its path can’t be predicted with 100% certainty, it appears it will miss the south coast and hit the Maine and Nova Scotia area.

With that being said, the NOAA storm tracker is predicting the south coast to get hit with a tropical storm while the hurricane moves past us. The storm is predicted to begin around 2am Saturday and continue for the rest of the day.

The yellow highlight on the storm tracker map indicates areas that will be experiencing a tropical storm.


NOAA Storm Tracker photo.

Mayor Mitchell noted, “While it is too soon to determine whether the storm will affect our area, city departments have already begun planning and preparing for possible impacts out of an abundance of caution.”

It is important to prepare for power outages and flooding just in case the storm takes a turn for the worse and hits the south coast dead on.




New Bedford Firefighters help woman deliver a baby in her living room

It wasn’t your average day in the office for four New Bedford Firefighters this Tuesday evening! At 5:10pm, Engine Company 8 responded to 104 Whitman St for a female in labor.

Lt. Nate Sylvia, FF Josh Charbonneau, FF Steven Mourao, and FF Kyle Carlson assisted a Mother in delivering a baby boy in her living room without complications. New Bedford EMS Paramedics along with EMS Supervisor Ralph Isherwood arrived and assumed care of Mom and her baby boy.

Both of them were transported to St. Luke’s Hospital Emergency Department and are doing well. NBPD also assisted on scene. Congratulations to the mother and huge shoutout to the New Bedford first responders that helped out!




New Bedford has had 6 shootings so far in September according to Police Union

The New Bedford Police Union is raising concern over an influx in shootings in New Bedford recently. They noted on social media, “Not including a shooting which occurred at 12 a.m. today, 6 of the first 10 days of September have had incidents of shots fired.”

Although not all of the incidents have been made public at the moment, we have been able to locate 4 reported incidents of “Shots fired” in September.

• September 1st at 2:17am near Devoll Street.

• September 5th at 9:19pm near Division Street.

• September 5th at 11:06pm near Matthew Street.

• September 8th at 4:24pm near West Rodney French Blvd.

We have reached out to the New Bedford Police Department to get further details on the 6 incidents and are awaiting response.

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Massachusetts City in state of emergency after “catastrophic flooding” Monday night

Leominster, Massachusetts has declared a state of emergency after “catastrophic flooding” hit the area late Monday evening. The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency issued an evacuation alert for areas near the “Barrett Park Pond Dam”.

“Due to a potential issue at the Barrett Park Pond Dam, persons in low-lying areas of the Fall Brook tributary to Fall Brook along Central St, Fall Brook & the North Nashua River, should evacuate & safely leave the area. Shelter is available at Skyview Middle School.”


Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency photo.

Governor Maura Healey issued a statement on the state of emergency,

“My heart goes out to residents and public safety officials in Leominster and other communities experiencing catastrophic flooding tonight. I’ve spoken with Mayor Mazzarella, and @MassEMA, @MassStatePolice, and @MassDFS are on the ground with boat rescue and emergency response teams doing everything they can to keep people safe.”

The Superintendent of Leominster Public Schools cancelled school amidst the flooding,

“Good evening, Due to the extensive flooding from today’s storm, the Leominster Public Schools will be closed on Tuesday, September 12th. Please stay safe.

Respectfully
Paula Deacon, Superintendent”


Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency photo.


Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency photo.


Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency photo.




Off shore wind vessels will begin “Inter-Array Cables Installation” for Vineyard Wind project

From September 10th through mid-October, cable laying operations will be taking place off the coast of the Vineyard. The Cable laying will be for the inter-array cables beginning with array cables lines five and six.

This operation consists of 4 unique vessels.

C-Pioneer” is the stationary support vessel which will be supporting cable pulling activities for the inter-array cables.

Photo by Vineyard Wind.

Adhemar De Saint-Venant” is a trenching support vessel that will be performing cable trenching and burial works.

Photo by Vineyard Wind.

F/V Seafarer” is a safety vessel that will monitor traffic and facilitate safe movement of other vessels in the area.

The Seafarer. Photo by Vineyard Wind.

Isaac Newton” is the cable laying vessel which will be conducting cable laying operations and will remain on site until October.

The Isaac Newton. Photo by Vineyard Wind.