Goodbye Former Mayor Thomas Menino and Thank You for Your Service by Felina Silver Robinson
Today we lost a great man. Many have said that the service that Former Boston Mayor Tom Menino has done for the city of Boston is unmatched. I was born in Boston in 1963. I only lived there for the first three years of my life. I was obviously too young to know what being a Mayor for a city as big as Boston meant. Through the years as I grew up in Brookline, Boston’s next door neighbor, I was able to see how things operated. Politics isn’t as easy as many would like to think it is. There are so many people to watch over, some in very different ways than others. You make choices that you don’t always agree with and don’t necessarily have the control to handle each situation as you thought you would or in the way that you would like to. When the day ends, your time is still not your own. When you lay down at night, you’re still on the clock. Your life belongs to all voters not just the ones that voted for you. Their needs are your problem.
It is well-known that Tom Menino had an amazing ability to make everyone he met feel like they were his extended family. The color of your skin was undetected. Your dialect didn’t direct his decision to help you. It was in his nature to extend his hand to anyone that needed it. Although I never had the pleasure or the honor to meet him, I can honestly say he is one man who I will always have the highest regard for. It takes a special person to be able to see the good in each person no matter what others might have said about them. He walked the streets that others weren’t willing to walk, He tackled the problems that others wouldn’t touch. The streets of Boston are safer and cleaner because of him.
I sure hope that someone intends on continuing to uphold the many parts of his legacy that the needy have come to depend on like the November dinners for Rosie’s Place.
I wish his family strength in their time of need. Being loved by so many will offer them all the support they could ever hope for. My heart goes out to all of them. May his spirit fly free and strong high amid the heavens and the angels.