Letters to the Editor

Thank You For Celebrating This Huge Win For Charlestown

We remain confident that our meeting with Mayor Walsh and the BPDA on July 22 was an incredibly positive and productive next step in collaborating on a comprehensive planning process for the future of Charlestown. The Mayor and the BPDA agree, as stated in the article in last week’s paper, that they want our involvement and participation in the planning process. 

Whether this process is called a “Master Plan” or not should not be the issue. The take away here should be that we the people of Charlestown have come together and demonstrated our collective strength and unified voice to collaborate with and proactively work with the Mayor and the BPDA. We will all continue to be positive and collaborative, looking for the best in each other, assuming positive intent, knowing that we all have Charlestown’s best interest in mind. 

We will be speaking with Lauren and Michael from the BPDA again later this week and will continue moving the process forward. 

With that said, a Plan with the BPDA only legally goes so far. We will need to influence Boston Public Schools, Charlestown’s Zoning articles and Boston Transportation Department as the findings from this study will only inform these independent subjects. 

We still have a lot of work to do. We’d like to meet in a few weeks prior to the official launch of the planning process with the BPDA in September. We will announce the meeting soon.

Please continue to encourage your membership, friends and neighbors to sign the petition online here: https://cps-ris.org/petition/

It is critical that we encourage the entire community to be involved in this planning process over the next year and a half. No one person or group can serve as our collective voice. Turnout is critical in influencing the direction of Charlestown. This planning initiative gives us the opportunity to create the BEST possible Charlestown of the future and influence immediate and much needed change.

Thank you for your continued support and efforts.

02129 Neighborhood Alliance

A Most Memorable Breakfast

I would like, very much, to thank Bob Beckwith and the Bunker Hill Associates for making this year’s Annual Bunker Hill Day Breakfast a most memorable one for me. In 1957, and as a senior in high school, I began what would become a 25-year working relationship with the old Charlestown Boys Club, now the Charlestown Boys and Girls Club. A couple of years later I began a more than decade long tenure as a summer lifeguard at what was then referred to as the Bunker Hill Pool, and a few years later, I became a faculty member at Charlestown High School. For the next 18 years or so, I served as a teacher, a two-sport coach, and an acting administrator. During that time I had the distinct privilege of working with what I now consider to be some of the finest young people to ever come out of the Charlestown neighborhood. By day those youngsters would fill the seats in my classroom, by night many of those same youngsters would come the gymnasium and the exercise room at the club where I worked for so many years. During the summer months, they came to the pool at the top of Bunker Hill Street. To say that I enjoyed working with these youngsters would be an absolute understatement. Next to my family, they became the most important part of my life. I never questioned, for even one second, whether I had done the right thing with my life. 

Most often my days would begin very early and end very late. My wife and I would often joke that my two young daughters didn’t even know what I looked like. Any negative thoughts that my wife might have had about my working hours, however, were quickly erased when I read her words in the Associates’ Annual Ad Book at the Breakfast. “…I remember all of the early mornings and all of the late nights at the high school and at the boys club like they were yesterday, and I would do it all over again knowing how much joy it brought to you and to the kids you taught and coached.” 

At the Breakfast, Bob Beckwith and the Bunker Hill Associates opened the doors to the Knights of Columbus, and in walked the memories. What a day! Many of those “kids” of yesterday, some now even retired, were there to say hello and to share the day. 

I have always thought that I had done the right thing with my life. Because of the Bunker Hill Associates, I no longer think that I did the right thing.

Today I know that I did the right thing.

Charlie McGonagle

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