Johnny Paolo, shown here in happier times, was injured in a crash on Commercial Street

Well-known North End resident, Johnny Paolo, was badly injured on Thursday, May 18, 2012 in an accident shortly after 9:00 pm on Commercial Street, below Copp’s Hill Terrace near the foot of Jackson Avenue.

While on a Vespa-like scooter, Johnny was riding on Commercial Street from the direction of North Washington Street toward Hanover Street when he passed two parked “Ghosts and Graveyards” tour buses that were double-parked on Commercial Street.  Both buses were parked over the bicycle lane and out into the single lane of traffic while waiting to pick up passengers who were touring the Copp’s Hill Burial Ground.

While in the process of passing one of the parked buses, Johnny drove directly into the rear of a pedicab, that was also passing the parked buses.  John and his scooter went down and he lost consciousness.  The pedicab operator was uninjured.

Police, Fire Dept. and ambulances arrived quickly.  John who remained unconscious the entire time, was quickly transported to a hospital.  The police department were onsite for quite a while.

Johnny Paolo, easily recognized by his character sunglasses, is often seen playing bocce and helping out in neighborhood activities.

As of Friday morning, John is undergoing surgery and the outlook for recovery is being described as uncertain.

General location on Commercial St. where the accident occurred.
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5 COMMENTS

  1. This is terrible! I hope John is able to recover quickly. It is very unfortunate that something like this had to happen to draw attention to the significant number of tour buses in our neighborhood that double park on Commercial St. constantly.

  2. John’s keen sense of humor and genuine kindness will be missed. Our prayers are with him, his family and friends.

  3. We are truly Sorry to hear of Johns accident. a wonderful Man. So respectful,
    kind, and a great neighbor! God Bless, Peace be with his Family.

    Mr & Mrs Geno Testa & Son Geno

  4. As a bicyclist, I am finding that the bike lanes on Commercial St. have turned into parking for buses or people stopping to use them as a cell phone lot. The corner at Charter is a nightmares due to all of the tour buses. The city needs to do a better job managing all of the tour buses. The mayor needs to remind people that the bike lanes are for bikes.

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