Robert DeLeo has announced his candidacy for Town Meeting member from Precinct 5.
We thought to ourselves, in the way we often do when we write the column each week, “Could Bob DeLeo, and those who voted for Bob for Town Meeting member in 1977, have imagined that this would be the start of a path in politics that one day would lead Bob to become the Speaker of the Mass. House of Representatives and one of the most respected political leaders in Massachusetts’ history?”
Well, to answer our own question, probably not, if only because none of us would be so presumptuous as to imagine that we could have predicted the future.
On the other hand, those of us who have known Bob since that time remember a young man who stood out from the crowd for reasons that continue to this day to set him apart from his fellow legislators on Beacon Hill: His honesty, sincerity, straightforwardness, intelligence, and desire to make Winthrop and our state the best they can be for all of us who live here.
It is fair to say that these are the qualities that led his fellow townspeople to elect him to Town Meeting, the Board of Selectmen, and State Representative, and for the members of the Mass. House to elevate Bob to the Speakership — and why he continues to enjoy immense popularity both among his fellow legislators and the public-at-large.
So while none of can claim that in 1977 we would have predicted Bob’s future political trajectory, on the other hand, we can say such a scenario — if we could have peered into the future — would not have been surprising to any of us back then.
We know we speak for the vast majority of our fellow Winthropites in expressing our gratitude for all that Bob has done for our community and our state over these past 40 years and that we hope he will continue to serve Winthrop and the Commonwealth for many years to come.