The best was truly saved for last at Monday night’s Council meeting as Ward 6 Councillor Charlie Patch gave his farewell address as a member of the Revere City Council.
Patch’s distinguished service to the city covers 44 years. He preceded his 12 years on the Council with 32 years as a Revere Police officer. Prior to that, Patch nobly served his country as a U.S. Marine during the Vietnam War.
“I missed Woodstock, but I got to see Bob Hope,” said Patch, who was serving in Vietnam while the famous music festival was being held in New York in 1969.
With his wife, Laurie, sons, Billy, Chucky and David, daughter-in-law, Noel Mandell-Patch, and grandchildren, Danny, Ava, Sadie, and Abigail, watching proudly in the Council Chamber, Patch humbly accepted a standing ovation from his colleagues and spoke from the heart about his accomplishments
“Thank you, Mr. President [Arthur Guinasso], he began. “I’m really sorry that I have to leave you and the rest of my colleagues, but it was time for me to step down. I wanted to do it tonight because next week I know is going to be a very quick meeting and I wanted my grandchildren and children to come here and see me in action.”
He called his time on the Council “12 years of good memories,” stating that his position on the Council was “a new career for me,” following four years in the U.S. Marine Corps and 32 years in the Revere Police Department.
Patch said he worked with three mayors, Tom Ambrosino, Dan Rizzo, and Brian Arrigo, in the past 12 years. He said Revere’s new schools, the new Harry Della Russo football stadium, and the new fields at Griswold Park located in Ward 6 are accomplishments in which he takes great pride.
“It took quite awhile [at Griswold Park], but we now have one of the best facilities around,” said Patch.
He credited city project planner Elle Baker for her work in North Revere in helping to build a new park on Salem Street. Speaking about his vote for the development of the former Shaw’s Supermarket sire, he praised “the great Ward 1 Councillor Joanne McKenna who filled the shoes of two other dear friends of mine, [the late] Jimmy Kimmerle and [the late] Richie Penta.”
Patch noted how honored he was to cast a vote for “my dear friend, Ashley [Melnik], the city clerk – one of my best votes ever. Thanks for your help over the 12 years.”
In closing, Patch said, “I love my family and there’s going to be time to spend with them. I’m going to miss all of you [on the Council]. Thirty years as a cop, 12 years as a Revere city councillor, I think it really is time to you. I’ll be around. I love Revere. I think Revere is going to be very successful in the future and I want to wish Brian Arrigo good luck in his next four years.”
The second standing of the evening rained down on Charlie Patch.
Councillors Praise Charlie Patch
“You are going to be missed by each and every one of us,” said Council President Arthur Guinasso, thus beginning a parade of accolades for retiring City Councillor Charlie Patch at Monday night’s meeting.
“You certainly were a great friend throughout it all,” continued Guinasso. “Whenever you were on the opposite side of an issue, you were always a first-class gentleman.”
Following are the other councillors’ comments:
Councillor-at-Large Jessica Giannino said to Patch, “You’re my ward councillor and it’s been a pleasure working with you as a colleague but it’s even better to get to know you as a friend.
“I can remember when I first got elected, my grandfather would tease me and anytime we wanted the sidewalk fixed or something done, he’d say, ‘I’m going to call Charlie Patch, I’m calling my ward councillor’ and he always did and you [Patch] always got it done. Thank you for everything you’ve done for me and for my family and for the city and the people in Ward 6. You always speak from the bottom of heart and you always do the right thing for your residents and those are really admirable qualities.”
Ward 4 Councillor Patrick Keefe said. “I think of you much like a father. You’ve been a really great partner on the Council. You’re very much like my father – you’re no-frills, you don’t have to come with lots of words, but when you say what you say, you mean it. I admire the way you came in after being a police officer for many years. I really admire the way you left – you’re a man of your word and your family is a reflection of that.”
Ward 1 Councillor Joanne McKenna said, “I want to say thank you because you’ve always had my backand you rolled with the punches with me. I love you and you’re one of my best friends up here. I’m going to miss your support and your presence alongside of me on this Council.”
Councillor-at-Large Steven Morabito told Patch, “You’re a friend, a colleague. Earlier you mentioned a vote about the [school] lottery and you got criticized. Each of us know whether you vote in favor of something or against something, you get criticism. One thing no one can criticize is your selfless character – you have dedicated 44 years of honor and integrity to this country and this city. No one can ever take that away from you. I commend you on your years of service and I wish you the very best retirement.”
Ward 2 Councillor Ira Novoselsky said he and Patch share “a lot of the same lifelong thoughts.”
“We’ve gone through a lot and you’ve been a stalwart not only for your ward and the city but for your family. It’s been a pleasure to work with you and I’m glad I can call you a fellow veteran. I say, congratulations, mazel tov, enjoy your family and the holidays.”
Ward 5 Councillor John Powers thanked Patch for “supporting myself and my endeavors in Ward 5.”
“On behalf of the people of Ward 5, I can’t thank you enough. You were always there no matter what it was. Sometimes it gets very contentious in this City Council Chamber, but you were always there, you always had my back even when we disagreed. There was never any animosity. And one other thing I’m going to remember about Charlie – any time I would come to this meeting without a pen, you could always look to Charlie and say, ‘Do you have an extra pen?’ and I always knew he always did because I sold him so many.”
Councillor-at-Large Tony Zambuto noted Patch’s service in the U.S. Marines and the Revere Police Department.
“I got to learn a lot about you and your character and think of you as a friend today and I honor that friendship,” said Zambuto. “I honor your service as a Marine and I honor your service as a police officer – some of the things that I respect more than anything else in life. And your service as a city councillor, you’re always true to yourself and true to your constituents. I got to know a man that I have tremendous respect and I’m going to miss you up here as a colleague and a friend.”