Red Sox greats Martinez, Ortiz attend Menino funeral
The life and work of Thomas Menino, Boston’s longest-serving Mayor, was remembered yesterday at a funeral service attended by dignitaries far and wide.
Not surprisingly, Red Sox slugger David Ortiz and former Boston ace Pedro Martinez were among those who payed their respects.
The sight of the two Boston sports legends at the service followed an outpouring of condolences and fond memories from the Red Sox owners and several current members of the team:
Menino was instrumental in the process of renovating Fenway Park last decade, and it was quite clear the Mayor was a huge fan of the team.
The lone time I visited the Mayor’s office, I briefly paused in front of prominent display of Boston sports memorabilia and observed an amazing collection. Menino had season tickets to the Sox and certainly had a special relationship with a team that won three World Series championships during his tenure.
While politicians often use sports to cater to their voter base (and just as often miss the mark – see Ted Kennedy’s “Sammy Sooser and Mike McGuire” press conference, John Kerry referring to “Manny Ortez,” and current Gubernatorial candidate Martha Coakley calling Curt Schilling a “Yankee fan“), Menino’s malpropisms (Rob Gronkowski as “Grabkowski” or “Gonk,” Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo as “KJ and Hondo,” and Adam Vinatieri’s Super Bowl-winning field goal being referred to as “Varitek splitting the uprights”) were either part of the Mayor’s endearing erroneous nature with names or a tremendous, decades-long troll job.
That said, there’s no debating the relationship between the city, the Mayor, and the Red Sox was a mutually beneficial one when Menino was in office.