Event—Public Programming

The Hunting Accident: A True Story of Crime and Poetry


Listen to an audio recording of this program.

It was a hunting accident—that much Charlie is sure of. That's how his father, Matt Rizzo—a gentle intellectual who writes epic poems in Braille—had lost his vision. It’s not until Charlie’s troubled teenage years, when he’s facing time for his petty crimes, that he learns the truth.

Matt Rizzo was blinded by a shotgun blast to the face in Chicago's Austin neighborhood—but it was while participating in an armed robbery.

Newly blind and without hope, Matt began his bleak new life at Stateville Prison. But in this unlikely place, Matt's life and very soul were saved by one of America's most notorious killers: Nathan Leopold Jr., of the infamous Leopold and Loeb.

From David L. Carlson and Landis Blair comes the unbelievable true story of a father, a son, and remarkable journey from despair to enlightenment, in the graphic novel, The Hunting Accident: A True Story of Crime and Poetry.

After their talk, Carlson and Blair will sign copies of the book, which will be available for purchase.

Download a PDF flyer for this event, to post and distribute, and explore related Newberry materials with our Collection Quick Guide on Early 20th-Century Law. Also explore the inventory of Matt Rizzo's papers in the Newberry collection.

Your generosity is vital in keeping the library’s programs, exhibitions, and reading rooms free and accessible to everyone. Make a donation today.

Excuse our dust!!!

Beginning January 2018 the Newberry is undertaking renovation of much of the ground floor. Ruggles Hall will not be affected, but please check this link frequently for the latest conditions - which exterior doors are open or closed, where to find an accessible entrance, which restrooms are available, etc.