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A View From Within - A New Book By Pauline Grogan

News for release – Wednesday 25 February 2004

Should a man have been allowed to stay in a New Zealand public hospital for 44 years at the taxpayers expense?

Was there no where else for him to go?

As a nation do we care?

How do we as a nation view diversity– particularly those who are disfigured?

In her new book A View From Within, Pauline Grogan tells the story of James Lynch who lay behind a curtain unable to speak or move in Tauranga hospital for 44 years.

Lynch was electrocuted at the age of 14 when he tried to pull a man away from electric cables. It is an absorbing tale of how a seriously disabled man was able to come to terms with his paralysed body and experience a fullness of life.

During her 17 year friendship with James, Pauline discovered he was able to help many others to move past the constraints of their lives to a greater richness than would otherwise have been impossible.

The nurses loved him. They became his family. Day after day they fed him emotionally and intellectually. It was the nurses who were there for him through 372,502 hours of dependence – 44 years.

Going to the movies became the highlight of his week. Every Wednesday members of the St John Ambulance would collect James in his wheelchair and take him to the movies – this lasted 20 years until the decision from OSH who decided that wheelchairs were no longer permitted in ambulances. The new rules of OSH had changed his life.

Five months after James had died, Pauline Grogan made the decision to write his story. She resigned from a well paid teaching job to write to fulfil a promise she had made when Lynch was still alive.

A View from Within will incite debate on the many issues facing our nation today.

As a nation do we believe we can find the strength within to cope with whatever life throws at us?

About Pauline Grogan

For as long as she could remember, Pauline Grogan wanted to be a Catholic nun. An intense desire to please God and those in authority, saw seventeen year old Pauline enter the Marist convent where she would live as a nun for the next 12 years of her life.

In 1975 Pauline married an old family friend, and had three sons and a daughter.

Since her autobiography Beyond the Veil was published in 1996, Pauline has been become a full time inspirational speaker in New Zealand. Her website can viewed at

A View from Within will be launched in Tauranga at 5pm on Thursday 26 February. There will be a Mihi and Karakia, followed by an address from RT Honourable Winston Peters, MP for Tauranga. Also attending will be The Deputy Mayor of Tauranga, representatives from Western Bay Health.


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