WEEK AHEAD: Giving Thanks; an era ends Thursday; saying goodbye to a political legend

It’s Rivalry Week, but before we get to that, Abington News wants to give thanks.

THANKS to everyone who has read, shared, and engaged with one of our articles this year. Thanks to everyone who has reached out to let us know about an upcoming event or bit of news. And thanks to everyone who has answered one of our calls or responded to one of our emails helping us report on what;s happening in Abington.

THANKS to everyone who volunteers their time to serve on one of Abington’s boards, committees, commissions, organizations, and non-profits. Your efforts are what keeps Abington a great place to live.

THANKS to the dedicated voters who routinely come out to Town Meeting and Town Elections and plays an active role in our democracy. We wish there were more of you, but that just means you extra recognition.

THANKS to the town’s public employees who educate our children, protect our health and safety, maintain our facilities, and keep the town open and running.

THANKS to the contrarians, critics, dissenters, lone wolfs, and heretics, especially those who do so without cynicism and vitriol. You’re not always right. But in a democracy its healthy to be able to challenge and be challenged.

THANKS to those who see the benefit of conservancy without obsolesence. Preserving our institutions are a worthy endeavor. But evolution is important also. Case in point: we’re thrilled Hornstra Farm was able to purchase Peaceful Meadow. We’re also excited they are updating the ice cream flavors and introducing sprinkles. The latter doesn’t negate the former.

THANKS to all those who have come before us, creating the foundation of the community we know today. We’ll never know all their names and all their contributions, but we are still benefitting from all their efforts today.


As if there normally isn’t enough riding on the annual Abington/Whitman Hanson Thanksgiving Day rivalry game, it also offically marks the final time Head Coach Jim Kelliher will lead the Green Wave football team onto the field. When the game kicks off Thursday morning at 10 a.m. it will mark the 112th time Abington and Whitman boys (and, since 1960, Hanson boys) have collided on the griditon. Kelliher has been on the field for half of them: 50 as coach, 3 as assistant coach, and 3 as a player.


The tributes are pouring in for John Walsh, the Abington native and former selectmen, who became known in state and national political circles as an architect of winning campaigns. Walsh, who died Monday of cancer, grew up on Monroe Street and attended St. Bridgets. He was first elected Selectman in 1983 and served 10 years before becoming immersed in local and regional politics. He managed campaigns for John Buckley, Jr., and Emmett Hayes, chaired the Abington Democratic Town Committee, as well as the Plymouth County Democratic League, and in 2002 he led the state Democratic Party’s Coordinated Campaign. His star rose as the architect behind Deval Patrick’s surprise election win in 2006, which focused on grassroots level organization. “Today we lost the incredible John Walsh. His memory lives forever in the legions of us he inspired, taught and cared about.” Patrick Tweeted on Monday

Walsh’s strategy was considered a template for the organizational structure behind Barack Obama’s win in 2008. Walsh, who moved from Abington to Dorchester in 2013, was also the longtime president of Independence Insurance Agency in Abington. Most recently he was Chief of Staff for U.S. Sen. Edward Markey. Current Selectmen Chairman Alex Hagerty said the flag outside Town Hall has been lowered to half mast in Walsh’s memory. “Selectman John Walsh’s decades of public service and exceptional grass-roots involvement grants him the great privilege of being an Abington Institution. Selectman John Walsh will be missed by many and his legacy will live on in Abington,” Hagerty said in a statement.  



Fire Station/DPW Building Committee, 11 a.m., Town Hall. Agenda not immediately available.

Board of Health, 6 p.m., Town Hall. Agenda not immediately available.

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