BOSTON (CBS) — Condolences from officials in Massachusetts and across the country poured in Thursday upon the news of former Boston Mayor Tom Menino’s death.
President Barack Obama:
“Michelle and I were saddened to hear of the passing of Tom Menino. Bold, big-hearted, and Boston strong, Tom was the embodiment of the city he loved and led for more than two decades. As Boston’s longest-serving mayor, Tom helped make his hometown the vibrant, welcoming, world-class place it is today. His legacy lives on in every neighborhood he helped revitalize, every school he helped turn around, and every community he helped make a safer, better place to live. I had a chance to speak with Tom’s wife, Angela, yesterday, and today our thoughts and prayers are with her, with the entire Menino family, and with the people of Boston who Tom loved so much, and who loved him in return.”
Secretary of State John Kerry:
“Tom Menino was Boston. In fact, if you just look around the city, you’ll see with your own eyes that he is Boston today.
Others talked, Tommy worked.
Crime fell, population rose, the skyline became world-class, schools got better, the financial, academic, and medical sectors thrived, and neighborhoods became more diverse. It was in those neighborhoods that Mayor Menino made his mark.
His example for 20 years as Mayor taught us all a lot about people and politics, and his example the last year taught us even more about grace and grit.
Tom Menino had the big bold beating heart of a street politician. People came up to the Mayor and asked him to fix things, and he followed up and fixed them, whether it was streetlights or parks or getting the snow plowed so people could get to work on time. He knew what built community. He felt the city and the neighborhoods in his bones.
He combined good old fashioned common sense with modern, state-of-the-art vision, and he delivered for Boston block by block, neighborhood by neighborhood. He was fiercely loyal and unbelievably reliable.
Teresa and I send Angela and their children and grandchildren a big hug and big prayers.
Together with their beloved Tom, Angela, Susan and Tommy Jr., Bill and Lisa, Giulia, Will, Olivia, and Thomas III, Samantha, and Taylor embody something fundamental: the love that is a great family.
God Bless them all, and God Bless Tom Menino.”
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh:
“Today the City of Boston mourns together.
To any who had come to know him, it is no surprise that more than half of Boston had a direct interaction with Tom Menino. No man possessed a greater love for our City, and his dedicated life in service to Boston and her people and changed the face of the City.
With sheer determination and unmatched work ethic, he took a city that is not as big in size as we are in stature and put us on the world stage as a national leader in health care, education, innovation and the nitty gritty of executing basic city services.
He was a leader on policy issues that shaped the Boston we know today: from the environment, to youth engagement, to innovation, to crime prevention. But more than anything, he was a man of the neighborhoods. He held a profound understanding of the direct and immediate impact that municipal government can have on people, and made it a great priority to ensure that government served people, and not the other way around.
Even in the latest stages of his illness, his concern – first and foremost – was always for Boston. We are forever grateful for Mayor Menino’s guidance, advice, and continued dedication to Boston. And though he has passed, his legacy and spirit will be felt across the City for generations to come.
Because of his leadership, Boston is a better place today.
From a grateful City: Our prayers are with Angela, Susan and Tommy, their families and friends, and all who loved Tom Menino.”
Gov. Deval Patrick:
“Boston has lost a political giant, and Diane and I have lost a friend. Our hearts and prayers go out to Angela and the whole Menino family. And we thank God for the service and the life of Tom Menino.”
Vice President Joe Biden
“Jill and I were saddened to hear of the passing of our good friend, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino. Tommy was our friend for a long, long time, and he was without a doubt one of the finest Mayors this nation has ever seen. His heart was always as big as the city he loved. And he was, to his core, the very definition of Boston Strong. Unyielding. Absolutely committed.
The poet R. G. Ingersoll could have been describing Tommy when he wrote:
“When the will defies fear;
When duty throws the gauntlet down to fate;
When honor scorns compromise with death – – this is heroism!”
In the days following the Boston Marathon bombing Tommy was heroic. He was calm in the face of uncertainty, and resolute as the whole world watched.
Even as he should have been in bed, Tommy stood tall, marching through the streets of Boston with a Louisville Slugger for a walking stick. He was determined to protect the people of his city, whether from high profile tragedies like the bombing or the everyday tragedies of gun violence as a leading member of Mayors Against Illegal Guns.
It was an honor to work with Tommy on the investments that improved Boston’s neighborhoods, schools, housing and infrastructure. The “Menino Way” is evident in every park, every school, and every corner of Boston that emerged safer, cleaner, and stronger than before.
His legacy will live on in the city he loved, and in the example he set for public servants everywhere.
Boston’s first Italian-American Mayor earned what my mother always said was the highest compliment we Irish can give: He was a good man.”
Former Boston Mayor Ray Flynn:
“Tom Menino and I shared more than the title of being Mayor of Boston, but also had a love for the people of Boston which sustained him every day. This gave him the passion and strength to fight every day to make Boston a better place. Yes, we sometime disagreed about issues, but we never had a difference of opinion about our respect for each other and our pride in making Boston a great city.”
“I also admired the courage of Tom Menino in fighting his sickness and his love for his family. Boston is a better city because of Tom Menino and the people of Boston are grateful for his commitment and service. The day I left City Hall to become U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, I said, “The City is in good hands. Today, Tom Menino is in good hands.”
Cardinal Sean O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston:
“Mayor Menino placed family, faith and public service above all else. His passing is a great loss to the City of Boston, the Commonwealth, our country, and to his family, who were the center of his life.
Generations of citizens of Boston benefitted from his care and concern, first as a City Councilor and then, most notably, as Mayor for twenty years. Under Mayor Menino’s leadership, the City of Boston achieved world class status while he always remained keenly focused on the needs and concerns of the city’s neighborhoods and its people.
It is a blessing for me to have known Tom and Angela since the time I arrived in Boston and to share in their faith and their good works. They always held providing support and assistance for people in need as a priority. It was not uncommon for the Mayor to attend several church services on a given day, at our Catholic parishes and the churches and worship sites of our ecumenical and interfaith brethren with whom he had very close and supportive relationships.
We pray for Mayor Menino as we give thanks for a life so well lived, for his wife Angela, their children and grand children, for the people of the City of Boston and all who mourn his passing. May his soul and all the souls of the faithful departed rest in peace.”
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren:
“The City of Boston lost a great fighter today. Mayor Tom Menino used his big heart, his strong voice, and his fierce determination to shape every corner of the city. Bruce and I send our prayers to Mayor Menino’s wife Angela, to his family, and to all Bostonians. Our mayor is gone, but he lives on in every neighborhood in Boston.”
U.S. Sen. Ed Markey:
“In every neighborhood across this city, Boston will mourn today after losing this great mayor, but we will fill that void with the love and respect we have for the life and the legacy of Tom Menino. Boston loves Tom Menino because Tom Menino loved Boston with all of his heart.
Tom Menino wasn’t satisfied with leading the best city in America, he wanted Boston to be the best city in the world. Tom Menino was an urban mechanic without equal, attuned to every detail in every neighborhood and forged a more inclusive Boston. Yet his vision for Boston was global, and he pushed the city into a new era of innovation. He helped this shining city on a hill illuminate its light across the world, building a beacon of innovation and entrepreneurship. He laid the foundation for Boston’s economic leadership in the 21st century, including spearheading the Boston Innovation District and developing the Seaport area.
The Innovation District is supporting the companies and industries that are creating jobs today. And he has ensured that Boston will continue to be a national leader in biotechnology, clean energy, and health care for generations to come.
Boston will move into the future a stronger, brighter, safer, and healthier city because of Tom Menino.
My thoughts go out to Angela, the entire Menino family, and everyone ever touched by the great Tom Menino, a mayor and a man for the ages.”
Boston City Council President Bill Linehan:
“Mayor Menino cared very deeply about this city and its residents. He was arguably the most dedicated public servant I have ever met. It was a privilege to work with him both before and during my time as a City Councilor. His love for the City of Boston made him an extremely effective Mayor, and improved the quality of life for all Bostonians both as a City Councilor and during his unprecedented 20-year career as Mayor. In that time, Mayor Menino was tireless in his determination and dedication to better our city in so many memorable ways.”
State Senate President Therese Murray:
“Words cannot express the sadness felt throughout the Commonwealth today. Tom Menino was truly one of the nation’s greatest mayors. He cared not just about Boston, but about everybody. Even while he was very sick, his thoughts and concerns were always with the people of this city and their well-being. It’s because of his fierce guidance and innovative vision that Boston has emerged as a vibrant urban landscape worthy of the title world-class city. His efforts in each neighborhood transformed the face of Boston.
“Life is too short, but he led a remarkable one. No one will ever love Boston as much as Tom Menino did. I will dearly miss his friendship and, while we will always mourn his loss, Mayor Menino will live through Boston forever. My thoughts and prayers are with Angela and the entire Menino family.”
Mass. House Speaker Robert DeLeo:
“Mayor Menino had the courage to do whatever it took to fight for the people of Boston. We are all beneficiaries of his generous spirit, particularly the children of Boston, for whom he advocated tirelessly so they would have bright futures. My deepest prayers are with Angela and the Menino family. We are grateful for the decades that you and Mayor Menino shared with the citizens of Massachusetts.”
Attorney General Martha Coakley:
“Today, Boston has lost the greatest mayor in its history. He was a friend and mentor, and a shining example to me and countless others of what it means to love and serve your community.
What made Tom Menino so remarkable was his connection to the people he represented – he understood their lives, their hopes, and their dreams. And he fought for them every day. He never forgot where he came from and stayed true to who he was to the very end.
We will miss him dearly, and we are all better for having known him and Boston is better for his leadership. My prayers go to his family – including his loving children Tom and Susan, his wonderful grandchildren, and to the love of his life, Angela. My condolences also go to his large extended family, his many friends, and his former staff.”
“If anyone deserved a long and satisfying retirement, it would be former Boston Mayor Tom Menino. For two decades, he threw himself into the job of Mayor of Boston with an enthusiasm and intensity that may never be duplicated. Like the thousands of people he’s helped, and the many more who simply grew to admire his work, his work ethic, and his deep love for and commitment to the city of Boston and its people, my wife Lauren and I are so sad to see him gone so soon. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Angela and their family.”
Boston Athletic Association:
The B.A.A. expresses our profound sadness at Mayor Menino’s passing, together with our deep gratitude for the magnificent support to the Marathon, the B.A.A. and the hundreds of thousands of athletes who have run in Boston under his watchful eye. He was always one of the first spectators to arrive at the Marathon and the last to leave, including in 2014. He touched the event and the athletes in every way, every year. The race is diminished without him.
Mayor Menino’s support for the Boston Marathon and the B.A.A. never wavered. His leadership after the bombings which occurred on Marathon Day in 2013 resulted in the City becoming synonymous with resiliency and strength. “Boston Strong” was his hallmark, and his compassion for the family of the victims and the survivors directly led to the quick formation of The One Fund Boston. Our thoughts are with his family during this difficult time.
Treasurer Steve Grossman:
“Tom Menino’s passing leaves a gigantic hole in the heart of the city he loved. His life and courage epitomized “Boston Strong” and will inspire our community for generations to come. Barbara and I extend our condolences to Angela, the entire Menino family, and the people of Boston.”
Secretary of State Bill Galvin:
“As a resident of Boston, I join other Bostonians in mourning the passing of Tom Menino who led this city with dedication and affection for so long. From his time as councilor
representing Hyde Park to his years as mayor, his concern for the well-being of all the city’s citizens was matched by a determination that government provide those citizens with services they require, whether great or humble.
Tom Menino’s years at City Hall stand as the best shining example of the contributions that arise from the district councilors, and make me proud to have had a role in the adoption of
My sympathy and prayers go out to the Menino family at their time of loss.”
Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley
“Tom Menino will be remembered as one of America’s greatest mayors. He was also a thoroughly good and decent man – a loving and beloved husband, father, grandfather, and brother. He dedicated his life and career to the people of Boston. He knew every block of every neighborhood as well as he knew his own back yard and he treated them with the same love and care. He valued every resident as if they were his neighbors and cared for every child as if their futures were his own. He was a mentor and a father figure to many of us who entered public service, myself included. For the city he loved so much, this is a death in the family.”
Rep. Bill Keating (MA-9)
“In the four decades that I have known Tommy Menino as a friend and colleague, I have never seen another person in public life that had his ability to relate person-to-person with anyone and everyone he met. My thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Angela, his family, and the entire City of Boston. We lost a true champion for the Commonwealth.”
Rep. Joe Kennedy III (MA-4)
“Mayor Tom Menino was the ultimate reflection of Boston itself. Tough, but kind. Innovative, but old school. Scrappy, but thoughtful. After over two decades leading this great American city he wore her strength, success and sorrow as his own. That legacy will light our communities for generations to come. My thoughts are with Angela, the Menino family, the hundreds that worked and served with him and every Bostonian who lost a leader and friend today.”
Victoria Reggie Kennedy, President of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute Board of Directors:
“Tom Menino was an extraordinary leader and a wonderful friend. He and my husband Ted had a great relationship, built on mutual respect, trust and love of the City of Boston. And lucky for me, Tom and Angela and I shared that same warm friendship.”
Twenty-first century Boston blossomed under Mayor Tom Menino. He leaves a huge legacy of achievement. And his loss leaves a huge hole in our hearts. Angela, Susan, Tom Jr. and their families are in our thoughts and prayers.”
Kathryn White, wife of former Boston Mayor Kevin White:
“I am deeply saddened by the loss of Mayor Thomas M. Menino. The mayor showed tremendous grace and dignity while battling his illness. His resilience is a lesson to us all. Mayor Menino maintained a close relationship with my husband (Mayor Kevin White) and both were extremely fond of each other. My prayers go out to the mayor’s loving wife Angela and the entire Menino family.”
Former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg:
“Tom Menino was a terrific mayor and a close partner for me. I got to know Tom well as we worked together to keep cities safe from gun violence. In 2006, we formed Mayors Against Illegal Guns — and what began as a meeting of 15 mayors ultimately became a coalition of more than 1,000 mayors from around the country. Whether it was tackling illegal guns or reviving neighborhoods, Tom was never afraid to take on tough issues. He cared deeply about the people of Boston, and he was tireless in making his city a better place to live and work. Tom was at his best when his city needed him most. In the aftermath of the Marathon bombing last year, he was steady as always, showing the same determined leadership that made his career in public service one of Boston’s most important and most influential. My thoughts and prayers are with Tom’s wife Angela, their children and family, and their many friends in Boston and beyond.”
Boston Marathon bombings survivor Jeff Bauman:
“RIP Mayor Menino. Thank you for your years of service and dedication. #BostonStrong”
The Boston NAACP joins countless other organizations in expressing our deep sadness for the
passing of former Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino. He was often described as the “People’s Mayor” for his
willingness to reach residents where they live and to engage citizens on the streets of Boston. He frequented
Boston NAACP events, served as an Honorary Chairman for the branch’s annual Freedom Fund Dinner and
hosted frequent meetings with NAACP leaders. The Mayor’s favorability across all communities was a
testament to his love for people and his commitment to service
“Mayor Tom Menino was one of the original LGBTQ champions. He wanted his legacy to be inclusion, and he succeeded. The MassEquality family sends its love and gratitude to his wife, Angela, and his entire family for sharing so much of him with all of us for so many years.
The list of examples of Mayor Menino’s visionary leadership is long. As a city councilor in the late 1980’s, he worked to support HIV education and prevention efforts, and he instituted the first needle exchange program in the state. As mayor, he fought for – and won – a municipal ordinance prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender identity. He refused to walk in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade because the LGBTQ community wasn’t welcome. He wrote to the anti-marriage President of Chik-Fil-A, who was considering opening a restaurant in Boston, to tell him that discrimination was not welcome on Boston’s ‘Freedom Trail.’ One of the earliest supporters of marriage equality, he lobbied the State House in support of the freedom to marry. And on May 17, 2004, the first day that same-sex couples could marry in Massachusetts, Mayor Menino personally welcomed couples at Boston City Hall and made sure they were shielded from protesters.”
Boston Celtics team statement:
“The entire Boston Celtics organization and our ownership group are deeply saddened by the passing of our beloved former Mayor, and dear friend of the Celtics, Thomas M. Menino. Mayor Menino’s love and devotion for the city of Boston and its residents will long be remembered by those who knew him, as well as future generations of Bostonians, who will benefit from his vision. We keep his wife Angela, daughter Susan, son Thomas, Jr. and his entire family in our thoughts at this time.”
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft:
“Today is a sad day for so many in Boston who are mourning the loss of Mayor Menino. Personally, my three favorite memories were the phone calls that I received from the Mayor after each of our Super Bowl victories inviting the Patriots to celebrate with our fans in downtown Boston. I was so happy to accept his invitations. My thoughts and prayers are with Angela and the entire Menino family today.”
Boston Bruins President Cam Neely:
“The Boston Bruins organization is deeply saddened by the passing of Mayor Menino and we would like to express our deepest condolences to his family. Mayor Menino was synonymous with the City of Boston and the professional sports teams that represented it. His passion was always evident and his support unwavering. He will be deeply missed.”
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