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The Photos That Helped Us Tell 2019’s Stories

Another year is nearly done. If you're having trouble remembering 2019, here's our photographers' picks for their best of collection. The photos reflect interesting stories — big and small — from the year.

(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Jan. 3 | Gov. Charlie Baker and his wife, Lauren, arrive at the Mass. State House to attend his inauguration for a second term.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Jan. 7 | Aaron Grossman fires at targets at the Harvard Sportsmen's Club. He is the NRA instructor and leader of the Boston Pink Pistols — a group brought together by their LGBTQ identity and interest in using firearms for self-defense, if need be.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Jan. 9 | A rare view, looking down at the Prudential Center, as Brett St. Germain operates a crane that sits above One Dalton Street.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Jan. 17 | An auction participant from Quincy tests out the food heating lamps in the kitchen at L’Espalier shortly before the auction commences. After 40 years of business in Boston's Back Bay, the shuttered L'Espalier auctioned off everything — from its industrial dishwasher to its copper pots.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Jan. 28 | A drug user in Lewiston, Maine, disposes used needles into a quart-sized sharps container to be exchanged for brand new needles supplied by the Church of Safe Injection. The group emphasizes harm reduction for drug users and works to create a community of people who are often at the margins of society.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Feb. 3 | Haley Valente, left, and Sophie Brown wrap miniature hot dogs with crescent dough to make pigs in a blanket for their Super Bowl party organized by College Success program students at the Perkins School for the Blind.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Feb. 5 | New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady lifts the Vince Lombardi trophy above his head as the Patriots Rolling Rally heads down Boylston Street following the team's sixth Super Bowl win.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Feb. 12 | Curators at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum inspect and arrange the "The Tragedy of Lucretia" and "The Story of Virginia" by Sandro Botticelli. The iconic paintings were reunited in Boston for the very first time.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Feb. 14 | Disabled veteran Peter Rooney who served in the 1st infantry, the Big Red One, salutes James McCue. Hundreds turned out for the WWII veteran's funeral after learning on social media that he had no surviving family.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Feb. 4 | Riley Bates and Madison Munoz walk out of a room with hundreds of yellow carnations hanging from the ceiling at “Happy Place.” The business bills itself as a “massive pop-up experience” that includes a series of themed rooms designed to optimize attendees' social media postings.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

March 15 | Hundreds of Massachusetts high school students who support efforts to address climate change gathered at the State House in Boston as part of a worldwide day of youth protests calling for focus on environmental causes.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

April 11 | Christine Ricardi, a customer service supervisor, joins in with other workers to strike at the Stop & Shop on McGrath Highway in Somerville.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

April 15 | During the 2019 Boston Marathon, Danielle Heath waves a “We Are Boston Strong” flag during the One Boston Day Memorial Moment of Silence at 2:50 p.m., recognizing the moment when the bombs exploded at the 2013 Boston Marathon.


(Keith Dannemiller for WBUR)
(Keith Dannemiller for WBUR)

April 29 | People pack into a transit bus during rush hour in Mexico City. This story was part of the series on Mexico City's bus rapid transit system and the lessons for transportation development in Greater Boston.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

May 3 | Handmaids gather round a pregnant handmaid at a rehearsal of the Boston Lyric Opera's "The Handmaid's Tale" at the at the Lavietes Pavilion at Harvard.


(Hadley Green for WBUR)
(Hadley Green for WBUR)

May 6 | Theresa Stokinger, 8, plays the fiddle during an Irish music session at the Green Briar pub in Brighton. Before it closed, the beloved Irish bar in Brighton was host to what might have been the longest-running informal session in Boston.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

May 13 | Sculptor Nancy Schön cheers from behind as Miguel Rosales, left, and three young helpers unveil the bronze recreation of “Myrtle The Turtle,” the famed green sea turtle of the New England Aquarium at the Myrtle Street Playground on Beacon Hill. After the installation, some parents complained their children were being burned by the sculpture's hot surface. It was moved beneath a tree canopy in the park.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

May 16 | The Dewey Square mural for 2019 was painted by Dutch artist Stefan Thelen, aka Super A, and is called “Resonance.” It depicts two barn swallows, one of which is breaking through a glass enclosure filled with dead flowers.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

May 17 | Roxbury Community College graduates wait in anticipation for the college's 44th commencement to begin at Reggie Lewis Arena.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

May 21 | Viviana Planine holds up a coat hanger with the words “No More” during the #StopTheBans State House rally.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

May 22 | Six-year-old Raegan Wilcox plants an American flag during the annual Massachusetts military heroes flag planting at the Boston Common.


(Hadley Green for WBUR)
(Hadley Green for WBUR)

May 24 | Concertgoers walk past the Ferris wheel during the first night of performances at Boston Calling.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

May 31 | The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth shut down its reactor, forever. Pilgrim generated electricity for New England for nearly 50 years.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

June 4 | The Boston police combs Huntington Avenue for additional evidence following a shooting in front of the Colonnade Hotel.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

June 5 | Artist Problak Gibbs spray paints in eyebrows on his mural, "Breathe Life 3" on the side of 808 Tremont St., a three-story building in Roxbury. “Breathe Life 3” is the third incarnation in Gibbs’ “Breathe Life” series and, like his other works, highlights black children.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

June 6 | A bin of expired food from Stop & Shop stores in New England is being poured into the anaerobic digester at the grocery chain's distribution center in Freetown, Mass. There, the discarded food is turned into energy.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

June 6 | Chef David Ferragamo, owner of Euphoric Food, tosses a pan of sautéed peas in a pan. As some Massachusetts residents consider savory options around food and marijuana, his company puts on marijuana dinner parties mostly in the comfort of peoples' homes.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

June 12 | Jessie Gaeta gives Bri a hug as she heads back out onto the streets at Downtown Crossing after a visit to the Care Zone van. The van is one of a half-dozen or so projects across the country testing models for this theory: If the U.S. wants to end the opioid epidemic, it must make treatment as available as drugs.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

June 15 | Emmitt, who's 19 months old, plays in the water fountains at the opening of Martin's Park. The park is named in memory of 8-year-old Martin Richard, who was killed in the 2013 marathon bombing.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

June 19 | Sante Fortunato hangs from a chandelier during a Cirque Du Soleil rehearsal at the Agganis Arena in Boston.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

June 24 | Jason Wilton from Derbyshire, United Kingdom, cuts stone during the construction of Watershed, a new exhibit by artist Andy Goldsworthy at the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

June 25 | Marka27's mural, seen from the Traveler Street bridge over the Bass River in one of a series of new murals at Underground at Ink Block in South Boston.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

July 9 | Lauryn Poe, right, and Sarah Keklak measure for a 6-by-3-foot trench in order to locate the rear of a building erected in 1841 that once stood on the property at 6 Hudson St. during the first archaeological dig in Boston's historic Chinatown.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

July 12 | Doug Aitken's balloon fills with hot air at Long Point Wildlife Refuge on Martha's Vineyard, but soon after this moment the balloon crew, battling with the wind, decided to abandon the evening's attempt to lift the balloon's basket off the ground.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

July 16 | An emotional Gilberto Pereira Brito is consoled by his 10-year-old daughter, Tatyana, as he describes his experience in ICE detention.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

July 19 | Comedian Joel Jeske opens the top of the piano reacting to music suddenly being played by the ensemble during the Berklee College of Music's first workshop on composing for the circus arts.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

July 23 | Greg Diatchenko wipes away tears with handcuffed hands at his hearing before the Massachusetts Parole Board. Diatchenko spent 34 years in prison, having been sentenced at age 17 for fatally stabbing a 55-year-old man during a 1981 robbery. His case was the basis of a 2013 state Supreme Judicial Court ruling that said mandatory life-in-prison sentences for juveniles are unconstitutional. He was paroled in late 2015, but ended up back behind bars in 2018 after a positive breathalyzer test at his home.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Aug. 2 | Plastic particles and filaments collected from the Atlantic Ocean in 1995 and archived at the Sea Education Association in Woods Hole. Over 30 years the organization has archived thousands of samples of floating microplastics, noting when and where they were found.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Aug. 6 | One of artist Nick Cave's inflatable sculptures for his "Augment" project in Boston, on display at the Boston Center for The Arts.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Aug. 7 | Children at the Yawkey Boys and Girls Club in Roxbury decorated old basketballs collected by artist Shaka Dendy for a large public sculpture at the Boston Center for the Arts Plaza on Tremont Street.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Aug. 31 | The controversial “Straight Pride” parade leaving Copley Square.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Sept. 6 | Kim Van Wormer, right, and Sydney Tierney carefully move the 2,500 lbs. mill stone into place, as farmers, millers and chefs rally to reinvent a lost “grain economy” in New England.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Sept. 8 | Trainer Justice Williams talks Eddie Maisonet through a crawl to side kick at a Brookline gym, one of a few workout spaces explicitly for LGBTQ folks that's cropped up in North America in recent years.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Sept. 10 | At-large Boston City Councilor candidate Julia Mejia canvasses on Evans Street in Dorchester. After a December recount she became the first Latina to win a Boston City Council seat, rising victorious by just one vote.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Sept. 16 | A worker at Decas Farms in Rochester, MA removes vines from a load of cranberries ready to be airlifted by helicopter and brought to the processing plant. Seeing Red was a series on the unlikely rise — and unexpected fall — of the U.S. cranberry market in China.

(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Sept. 20 | Brianna O'Brien, from Hampton Falls, N.H., protests at the Climate Strike in City Hall Plaza.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Oct. 1 | U.S. Sen. Edward Markey and U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy at a meeting in Boston shortly after Kennedy announced his bid for the U.S. Senate, launching a Democratic primary challenge against Markey.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Oct. 3 | Makeeba McCreary, chief of learning and community engagement at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, begins a guided school group visit in the Linde Family Wing entrance with local educators. Museum staff unveiled the new video as well as other procedures they put in place to make the MFA a more welcoming place after a racist incident in May impacted a group of students.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Oct. 7 | Ethan Woodman of Methuen, Mass., tests out a vaping device at Smoker Choice in Salem, N.H. After Massachusetts' governor announced a temporary ban on vaping products, many residents started trekking to New Hampshire to buy them.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Oct. 8 | A $1 bill, partially painted with a paint that’s competing to be the blackest black in the world, demonstrates its ability to absorb 99% of the light when placed into a box painted with the same coating.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Oct. 15 | Mike Callahan and John Egan, from a Southampton company that helps people manage beaver problems, place a pipe into position on Causeway Street in Millis.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Oct. 18 | Cellists Luis Claret and Yeesun Kim have a laugh after playing the Cello Suite No. 1 by Johann Sebastian Bach in preparation for a weekend tribute to celebrate Pablo Casals' legacy.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Oct. 22 | Cannabis Control Commission inspector Nick Millen uses a flashlight to inspect marijuana plants. The CCC's inspections routine is meant to ensure retail shops, grow facilities, manufacturing plants and independent labs are operating within regulation.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Oct. 30 | Visitors are directed to watch a diorama of the trial of Rebecca Nurse during a presentation of the Salem With Trials at the Salem Witch Museum. The museum is one of many organizations and businesses attempting to balance Salem’s dark history with the commerce and horrors of Halloween.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Nov. 13 | A man stands in the corridors of the Massachusetts State House. A report concludes the state Legislature, as well as local elected bodies, fail to reflect the actual racial, ethnic, gender and political makeup of Massachusetts. The nonpartisan think tank MassINC identified several factors that have led to the disparities, and detailed the consequences for failing to address the divides.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Nov. 18 | The firetruck carrying the casket of fallen Worcester firefighter Jason Menard proceeds down Temple Street toward St. John’s Catholic Church.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Nov. 26 | With the cranberry harvest in Massachusetts underway, harvesters in Plymouth use a boom to guide the cranberries into a vacuum to pump the fruit into a machine for cleaning.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Dec. 5 | Weymouth police escort Lisa Jennings away from the Weymouth natural gas compressor site after protesters attempted to obstruct a truck from leaving the site on the Fore River.


(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Dec. 6 | Climate protesters spent the afternoon chanting and singing in the halls outside the governor's State House office.


(Jesse Costa/WBUR)
(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Dec. 18 | Vascular surgeon Doug Jones and his team perform a carotid endarterectomy at Boston Medical Center.

With additional photos from Hadley Green for WBUR

This article was originally published on December 23, 2019.

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Robin Lubbock Twitter Visual Media
Robin Lubbock produces visual and social media for WBUR.

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Jesse Costa Twitter Photographer, Multimedia Producer
Jesse Costa is the multimedia producer for WBUR.

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