Former Massachusetts House Speaker Salvatore DiMasi is back in Boston after being released from prison in North Carolina.
DiMasi was let out of a federal prison in Butner, North Carolina, Tuesday morning. His wife, Debbie, accompanied him home to Massachusetts. He arrived at Logan International Airport around 5 p.m., and was wheeled off the plane in a wheelchair.
He spoke briefly to reporters, saying he's "happy and grateful" to be back in Boston in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.
"It's a very emotional day for me," he said. "It's been a trying and difficult experience for me and I'm looking forward to just being reunited with my family... I just love being back in Boston."
DiMasi served five years of an eight-year sentence for public corruption. Last week, a judge approved a request for compassionate release because of DiMasi's health problems.
DiMasi has been treated for throat and prostate cancer in prison. His cancer is in remission, but his treatments caused a narrowing of his esophagus that creates a risk of choking when he eats or drinks.
"I'm a fighter," he said Tuesday upon arriving home. "I'm gonna fight this all the way."
The once-powerful Democrat was convicted of steering state contracts to a software firm in exchange for $65,000 funneled through his private law firm.