A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.


Two Coroners - One Never Smiled
Tuesday, May 08, 2007

It was sometime in 1984 that I photographed retiring city Coroner Glen McDonald for Vancouver Magazine. A year later McDonald published a book (co-written with John Kirkwood) with the curious title How Come I'm Dead? Of the shoot I remember little except for a few things. McDonald smelled of whisky and even though he was very serious I had this impression that at any moment he was going to laugh loudly.

In October, 2002 I had the opportunity to photograph another city coroner, Larry Campbell. By then he was our mayor and he came to my studio with a collection of hats. Unlike his predecessor he smiled all the time but I managed to get this out of character photograph (or is it?) of Campbell looking very serious.

I find it curious that both men dealt with death yet had an uncommon liking for spirits.


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