Thursday, October 30, 2014
Farewell Mayor Thomas Menino
From "The Right Stuff" "Is that a man? You're damn right it is."
Thomas M. Menino, Boston’s longest serving mayor, has died at 71
Our beloved mayor, Thomas Menino, "The People's Mayor," passed away today.
My daughter and I had dinner at the table next to him and his family just two months ago at Saraceno Ristorante (his favorite) in Boston's North End. We minded our business and didn't bother him, but as he and his party got up to leave, he looked our way, and my daughter and I waved and blew him kisses. He warmly acknowledged our greeting, and waved back at us.
I was also in his company a year ago when when he dropped in on the luncheon that the mayor's office gave every year for North Enders celebrating their Italian heritage. He knew that lunch would be his last as Boston's mayor, but none of us could have imagined it would be the last he'd attend.
Mayor Menino was Boston's longest serving mayor who oversaw tremendous changes in the city he loved. Among the many issues he supported, he was a strong supporter of LGBT rights and of marriage equality, and boy did he love our sports teams.
When Boston was horrified by the marathon bombing in 2013, Mayor Menino was in the hospital recovering from surgery. He left the hospital, when anyone else should be recovering, and showed solidarity with the city he loved. And the city loved him.
How sad it is that one year after retiring from politics he passed away, leaving his family and Boston with such a terrible loss.
He was lovingly called "Mumbles Menino," because of his habit of talking fast and swallowing his words, so that sometimes it was difficult to understand him. He also was a malapropist, once using "ironic" rather than "iconic" when describing one of Boston's sports teams. We laughed with him, not at him, and that's because he never forgot who he was or where he came from. He was a humble, caring, good man, something rare in a politician.
He will be missed.
Charlie Pierce: Thomas Menino, R.I.P.