The dedication of Peter Looney Park Saturday morning was a moment to savor – for here was the modern neighborhood of Charlestown out in force to say thank you to one of their own.
It was a fitting celebration of the opening of a small urban space dedicated to a man who personifies what it is to do for others always before doing for one’s self.
In his self effacing style, Mr. Looney said thank you to the huge throng that gathered to say than you to him.
Although he is suffering from serious illness, Mr. Looney kept a stiff upper lip, as the English might tend to say, but his resolve at the podium was all about being Irish, being a Townie and being proud as a family man.
He was a tradesman, labor union guy all his life. Many who were there paid tribute to this and to his understanding of the human predicament. His was a lifetime of hard work and loyalty to his town.
In fact, his was a life given almost entirely to Charlestown other than to care for his own family.
He was, in every way, Charlestown’s man for all seasons – a true gentleman who brought people together, who solved problems, who never spoke unkindly about the people who didn’t tend to agree with him.
He is, in every way, a sweet man in the fight of his life.
We applaud the city for naming a park after Peter Looney here.
But the real applause is for a life spent doing for others always before doing for himself.
That is what Peter Looney is all about.
He is quite a guy.
Naming a park after him doesn’t tell the whole story.
Those of us who know him know this.
We wish him the best and we pray he’ll be around for a long, long time.