The town named the Department of Public Works Building on Kennedy Drive the Richard D. Dimes Public Services Facility at a well-attended dedication ceremony Saturday morning.
Dimes has been one of Winthrop’s longest-serving public officials and worked in various positions in town government. His efforts were instrumental in the construction of the DPW facility.
The praise of Dimes’s record of service refleced well on a man that was always passionate and outspoken about what he felt was in the best interests of his fellow residents.
“The town has had town government for 160 years and Dick Dimes has been part of that for over 50,” said master of ceremonies Thomas Reilly in a remark that drew applause. “I think everyone knows the diligence he brought to the office.”
Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo said it was Dimes who asked him to run for a position on the Board of Selectmen.
“It’s interesting to note that a Republican is responsible for a Democratic Speaker of the House,” said DeLeo.
The Speaker said he nominated Dimes every year for “Citizen of the Year” recognition “because I honestly felt that there was no one who’s done more for this town than Dick Dimes. He is what you call a true legend.”
DeLeo said he learned a lot from Dimes during their association in town government.
“What I learned from this man in terms of sincerity, loyalty, commitment, and knowledge can never be equaled,” said DeLeo. “He’s truly an amazing guy. Think about the fact that over all these years Dick Dimes always had such a great love for this community that he continued to serve when other people would have walked away. I can’t thank you enough on behalf of the people of this community.”
Town historian David Hubbard illuminated on the many positions that Dimes has held in town government during the past 50 years.
“[Dimes] served four years as selectman, four years as chairman, 12 years on the planning board, many of which were as chairman, 45 years as a town meeting member,” said Hubbard, while citing other boards and commissions on which Dimes served.
“Behind every great man is a great lady and Dick has had Margaret as his soulmate for 70 years,” said Hubbard.
Town Council President Peter Gill told the gathering, “When Dick Dimes believed in something, he believed in it passionately. I appreciate your efforts. I’m proud to present this town citation to you.”
Jonathan Dimes, son of Dick and Marge Dimes, delivered thoughtful remarks about his father on behalf of the Dimes family.
Dick Dimes received the first of two standing ovations prior to his remarks.
“I really appreciate this,” said Dimes. “Everyone I see has always helped me and they are the backbone of this community because I don’t care what anybody says – we have the airport, we have Deer Island, but we are probably the best small town in the whole Commonwealth of Massachusetts.”
Dimes asked young residents in the town to step forth and serve on committees. “If today’s generation can come forth and do the same as we did, we’ll continue to be a great town.”
He thanked his wife, Marge, for her support through all their years since meeting in high school. He then humbly accepted the honor of having a building in town bear his highly respected name.
“I thank the town of Winthrop for giving me this honor because I really, really appreciate it.”