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Menino's Thanksgiving Tradition

For decades, the late former mayor of Boston, Tom Menino, served Thanksgiving dinner at The Pine Street Inn, one of the city's most well-known homeless shelters.

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    For decades, the late former mayor of Boston, Tom Menino, served Thanksgiving dinner at The Pine Street Inn, one of the city's most well-known homeless shelters. (Published Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014)

     For decades, late former Boston Mayor Tom Menino served Thanksgiving dinner at The Pine Street Inn, one of the city's most well-known homeless shelters.

    The former mayor passed away Thursday morning at the age of 71 after a battle with cancer, less than a year after leaving his 20-year post as mayor. During this time, Menino helped the shelter behind the scenes, too.

    "He was supportive of the work we did. He was very supportive of us getting more housing and getting people out of homelessness," Lyndia Downie, the executive director of the Pine Street Inn said. "He would talk to people and people felt like they knew him. He wasn't intimidating. People were very happy to talk to him and he was very happy to talk to them."

    The Pine Street Inn provides shelter and other services to more than 1,600 homeless people per day. The last time time Menino served Thanksgiving dinner at the Pine Street Inn as mayor in 2013, he downplayed his presence and said the focus should be on the good things the shelter does for the city of Boston every day.

    "You know how lucky I am to be here?" the mayor asked.

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