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News ::
Philip Berrigan, America's Gandhi, dies at 79 (english)
07 Dec 2002
BALTIMORE - December 6 - Anti-war activist Phil Berrigan died December 6, 2002 at about 9:30 PM, at Jonah House, a community he co-founded in 1973, surrounded by family and friends, two months after being diagnosed with liver and kidney cancer.
Philip Berrigan, Anti-War Activist, Dies at Home in Baltimore, MD

BALTIMORE - December 6 - Phil Berrigan died December 6, 2002 at about 9:30 PM, at Jonah House, a community he co-founded in 1973, surrounded by family and friends. He died two months after being diagnosed with liver and kidney cancer, and one month after deciding to discontinue chemotherapy. Approximately thirty close friends and fellow peace activists gathered for the ceremony of last rites on November 30, to celebrate his life and anoint him for the next part of his journey. Berrigan's brother and co-felon, Jesuit priest Daniel Berrigan officiated. [from a news wire service]

Early one Saturday morning, Phil Berrigan called me after he and other Plowshares activists had been arrested in Maine for pouring blood on an Aegis Destroyer at Bath Iron Works.

I had never met the man before, but he had heard that I had a big mouth. And since he was only allowed one phone call, he must have decided that I could spread the news. I let Phil know that I did not have a radio program myself, but I did have contacts. By the end of the day, with permission of the Sheriff to receive phone calls, Phil had been interviewed by over 20 alternative media outlets.

In December of 1998, Joe Friendly (NYC cable access) and I travelled to Baltimore to record Noam Chomsky. We stayed as house guests at Jonah House, where I remember allowing Phil to use the bathroom before me in the morning. Later that day, Phil, Liz McAlister and their kids showed up at the Chomsky lecture, where they were videotaped as audience members.

I never recorded Phil speaking, but I did photograph him when he came to Portland for re-sentencing. He was a big man with carpenter's hands and a determined look, yet a peaceful countenance.

He will be missed, but one day, Americans will realize that Phil Berrigan was America's Gandhi.

This past June, I recorded Liz McAlister and Daniel Berrigan in Portland. It was an excellent talk where they discussed their lives of non-violent civil disobedience, from draft resistance to Plowshares.

Radio Free Maine presents

Draft Resisters, Plowshares Activists and Christians Daniel Berrigan and Elizabeth McAlister
speaking on
Peace and Justice as a Way of Life

Upon receiving the Noam Chomsky Award at the 4th Annual Meeting of the Justice Studies Association Web Site

Video contains speech by John Schuchardt on behalf of Philip Berrigan and the Prince of Peace Plowshares Activists recorded at BIW/General Dynamics in 1997

Recorded by Roger Leisner on June 1, 2002 at the Eastland Park Hotel in Portland, Maine

Available on VHS video for $20.00 and audio for $11.00 Please make your check payable to
Roger Leisner and mail to
Radio Free Maine
P.O. Box 2705
Augusta, Maine 04338

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