Townie Tidbits


Over this summer, community activists in East Boston  have been holding peace marches for a safe summer in the neighborhood. One sign carrier held up a sign in Spanish that read YO AMO LA PAZ, translated I LOVE PEACE. We all love peace no matter where we live. We all strive for it. What is peace? Is it merely the absence of violence or is it much more than that? I think it is an atmosphere of respect where we all want to be treated the same. There is so much animosity in the country today much of it fed by folks bitterly opposed to one another. We need to do our best not to get infected by this malady, which appears spreading like a cancerous growth.

The recent establishment of a Peace Park in Charlestown down at the bottom of Mt. Vernon Street in the shadow of the Tobin Bridge. There was an official dedication and march through the community’s streets. Many marched and others watched with interest. This park was dedicated to the memory of Bobby McGrath. He was a BHA police officer who was fatally stabbed on January 9, 1988 when he tried to break up a fight at a birthday party. The weapon used a cake knife. The history of homicide in Charlestown is much too long. Between 1975 and 1994, reportedly 49 folks were killed in the community’s one square mile but only 26 culprits were ever arrested.

As I said over a month go, in my mother›s Harrington family about 90 years ago her brother John Callahan was found dead in a doorway on Main Street. His killer never identified. It affected my mother›s family forever  as she often spoke of him dying so young in his 20s.

It was a good thing to see young people in the community get together to construct this peace park, a small space dedicated to the idea that peace is important as well as healing. Hopefully, it will make folks remember that we all can play a role in bringing peace to the world we live in daily. It is a positive sign that we can overcome those things that hold us back from peace within ourselves and with each other.



I still don›t like the idea that part of old St. Catherine’s is now the site of a Dollar Tree Store. I know the church closed about 10 years ago, and probably anything is better than watching this edifice rot in front of our eyes  and I know it is close to the projects and does seem to fill a need to many but I so wished it was something more than an outlet for  cheap goods from China.



Larry and Joe have gone to Vermont and Bunker Hill Florists has now become a part of Charlestown›s rich history. The new place just opened and is called JuneBug and several of the old gang have continued their employment under the new ownership. More on JuneBug in an upcoming commentary right here.

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