‘Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall’ to be screened Nov. 20

Staff Report

Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall will be the subject of a film viewing and discussion from 6 to 8 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 20, at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford, 1601 Parkview Ave. The program will be held in the Robert J. Vickery, M.D., Auditorium.

The event, presented by Northern Illinois Hospice and University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford, is free and open to the public.

The presentation will include a viewing of the Academy Award-nominated HBO documentary Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall, a moving cinema verite documentary that breaks through the walls of one of America’s oldest maximum-security prisons to tell the story of the final months in the life of a terminally ill prisoner, Jack Hall, and the hospice volunteers, they themselves prisoners, who care for him.

The documentary draws from footage shot over a six-month period behind the walls of the Iowa State Penitentiary and provides a fascinating and often poignant account of how the hospice experience can profoundly touch even the forsaken lives of the incarcerated.

A panel discussion following the 42-minute documentary will address the filmmaker’s experience as well as questions raised by the film, including what issues arise at end of life; who does/does not deserve specialized treatment at end of life; what does hospice provide; what is a community’s role to care for its own (whether a prison, a church, or a city); and how do health care practitioners and hospice volunteers help facilitate a “good death”?

Panel presenters include Edgar Barens, Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall filmmaker and director and media specialist at University of Illinois Jane Addams College of Social Work; Mike Bacon, long-time public health practitioner and former director of the Winnebago County Health Department; Ruth Fairchild, long-time advocate for incarcerated individuals and their families, current outreach coordinator for Zion Lutheran Church; Kellie Gibbons, ANP-BC, provides care at the Winnebago County Jail Medical Unity as a nurse practitioner for the UIC College of Medicine at Rockford; and Sheila O’Leary, Volunteer Program coordinator for Northern Illinois Hospice.

For more information, visit www.northernillinoishospice.org or call (815) 398-0500.

Oscar-nominated filmmaker to speak at RVC Nov. 20

The Rock Valley College (RVC) Department of Mass Communication will welcome Oscar-nominated filmmaker Edgar Barens for a special screening of his documentary Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall.

The screening will take place at 12:30 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 20, in the Student Center Atrium on RVC’s main campus, 3301 N. Mulford Road. A Q & A session with Barens will follow at 1:30 p.m.

The Last Days of Private Jack Hall is a moving cinema verite documentary that breaks through the walls of one of America’s oldest maximum security prisons to tell the story of the final months in the life of a terminally ill prisoner and the hospice volunteers, they themselves prisoners, who care for him. The film draws from footage shot over a six-month period behind the walls of the Iowa State Penitentiary and provides a fascinating and often poignant account of how the hospice experience can profoundly touch even the forsaken lives of the incarcerated.

The film was nominated for Best Documentary Short at the 2014 Academy Awards.

This event is free and open to the community.

For more information, call (815) 921-3360.

Posted Nov. 19, 2014

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