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Lynch to Speak at First Presbyterian Church in Bristol, Tenn., April 15
On April 15, The Buechner Institute at King University will welcome back author, commentator,
and undertaker Thomas Lynch as the final speaker in the 2012-13 Buechner Lecture Series.
Lynch will speak at First Presbyterian Church in Bristol, Tenn., at 7 p.m. The lecture
series is co-sponsored by the Bristol Herald Courier.
“As we near our one hundredth speaker in the Buechner series since 2008, Tom Lynch
will be our first returnee,” said Dale Brown, director of the Buechner Institute at
King University. “He is simply one of the great orators of our time. His essays
and his poetry speak powerfully to issues of life and death. If you missed him last
time, make it this time. This is not a program to miss.”
For three generations, Thomas Lynch’s family business, Lynch Sons funeral home, has
served the town of Milford, Mich. His deep connection to community and place has
made him a popular and provoking poet, memoirist, and commentator. Lynch’s work has
been widely featured in such venues as the New York Times, the Times of London, Esquire,
Harper’s, Newsweek, and on BBC and PBS.
Lynch is the author of five collections of poems and three books of essays. Paraclete
Press published “The Sin Eater: A Breviary” in Sept. 2011. It is a collection of
Lynch’s sin-eater poems accompanied by black and white photographs by Michael Lynch
and cover art by Sean Lynch. Other recent works include “Apparition Late Fictions,”
(W. W. Norton Company, June 2010), and “Walking Papers: Poems (W. W. Norton Company,
Feb. 2010). In 2005, Lynch’s memoir was published. “Booking Passage: We Irish and
Americans” (W. W. Norton Company, June 2005)was a memoir of forty years of coming
and going between Michigan and Moveen, West Clare in Ireland.
Lynch has also authored numerous works dealing with life and death including “Bodies
in Motion and at Rest: On Metaphor and Mortality” (W. W. Norton Company, Feb. 2010),
and “The Undertaking: Life Studies from the Dismal Trade” (W.W. Norton Company, July
1997, July 1998),” which was the winner of an American Book Award and finalist for
the National Book Award.
In October 2007, Lynch was the focus of “The Undertaking,” a film from PBS Frontline
that observed the rituals of caring for the dead as well as the living. “The Undertaking”
won the 2008 Emmy Award for Arts and Culture Documentary. A second documentary by
Cathal Black, “Learning Gravity,” was produced for the BBC. The film was featured
at the 2008 Telluride Film Festival and the 6th Traverse City Film Festival in 2009 where it was awarded the Michigan Prize by Michael
He lives in Milford, Michigan where he has been the funeral director since 1974, and
in Moveen, County. Clare, Ireland where he keeps an ancestral cottage.
Thomas Lynch will speak at 7 p.m. on April 15 at First Presbyterian Church in Bristol,
Tenn. The event is open to the public and free to attend. For more information, contact
Dale Brown at 423.652.4156 or visit www.buechnerinstitute.org.
King University is a Presbyterian, master's-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King
College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees
and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences,
pharmacy, digital media, education, and humanities. Graduate programs are offered
in business administration, education, and nursing. A number of research, off-campus
learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University
is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity athletic teams.
For more information about King University, visit www.king.edu. King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of
any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability. King University
is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information, contact
the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road,
Richlands, VA 24641.