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Malden today, tomorrow and yesterday – Peter Myles retires

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  Breaking news…He’s played in your favorite local pub band since you can remember. He’s also your favorite drummer from Malden of all time. Mine also! Since his early teens he’s probably played at a high school dance you attended, or your wedding, perhaps, or maybe you saw him when his bands played regularly at the Saint Rocco Feast (we’ll get him back, someday). He’s also one of the most popular, most beloved, and most respected mail carriers Malden has ever had. No bull. Still going strong, by the way. He’s Peter Myles and he is retiring from the USPS after 35 years – with his sanity still intact – believe it or not! Congratulations, my friend!

  I asked Peter to comment on his retirement. Like the classy guy that he is, this is his classy statement: “Lots of things go through my mind thinking about my career working for the Postal Service for over 35 years. Mr. Rogers used to say mail carriers are people in your neighborhood. When you have your own route and you’ve been there for a few years you really get to know your customers and the neighborhood they live in. Sometimes you know more than you’re comfortable knowing. Sometimes you’re the only one your customer sees all day, so you make sure they are all right even if it’s a simple hello through the window. You are part of what’s going on in people’s lives even if it’s in a very small way. You share happiness and grief with your customers who after many years seem more like friends. Most of all I know my customers depend on my consistent service and friendly attitude day in and day out. It’s not an easy job and as an ‘on the job instructor’ for 25 years I can tell you that no one ever overestimates how hard the job is or the demands of working outdoors through all kinds of weather. The job got me through to this part of my life with security from my first day to my last which is coming up in about seven weeks. I made some great friendships and learned many lessons in life dealing with customers from different walks of life and different cultures. I certainly know the streets of Malden now, laugh out loud.”

  It is said in Malden today, tomorrow and yesterday…

  Mike and Gloria Craven – 39 years of wedded bliss this November. Congratulations, my friend.

  Breaking news! Not one, but two movie shoot locations are being considered for Malden. One is a Paul Giamatti film, the other another movie on the (self-confessed) “Boston Strangler,” Albert DeSalvo.

  I want to personally thank Ward 8 Councillor Jadeane Sica for the moment of silence she called for my late father at the last City Council meeting. It meant a great deal to me and my family. You made friends for life with that gesture, Ms. Sica. Wait, you already were our friend for life!

  How cool was Mayor Gary Christenson’s “Vax Man” Halloween costume at the “Malden Chamber’s Downtown Trick-Or-Treat” extravaganza last week? Loved yours also, Paul “Father Time?” Hammersley!

  I always stop for a moment at Andrea Giannattasio’s headstone at Forestdale Cemetery; “Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone?” – 1957-1975.

  Malden Police Office Mike Powell was recently promoted to lieutenant. Congratulations, Lt. Powell. Congratulations also for having one of the best mustaches I have seen on a police officer, maybe ever.

  Please don’t forget the Malden Public Menorah Lighting on Sunday, December 5 at 5. It is sponsored by the City of Malden and the Chabad of the North Shore and was a huge success last year. It takes place at the best new meeting space in Malden, the courtyard/plaza outside of the new City Hall on Pleasant Street, and it will also feature arts, crafts for kids and prewrapped treats. Put a smile on Public Facilities Director Eric Rubin’s face and stop by for the festivities.

  I love Witche! Said in my best Tommy Heinsohn voice! As quoted in Malden High School’s Blue & Gold newspaper, new head football boss Witche Exilhomme: “I am bringing in a culture shift to change the mindsets here, hard work will be a mindset here, discipline will be a mindset here! Our goal this season is to get better every week; it is to give our young players a lot of experience and knowledge to bring into the offseason.”

  Special congratulations to one of my favorite people ever, Mike “Buffalo” Byrne, class of 1972, on his induction into the Malden High School Athletic Hall of Fame. Mike’s one of the good guys. I’ll write extensively on the banquet in future weeks.

  Speaking of Peter Myles (who, by the way, still has his rock star good looks), he is currently behind the kit for the J. Geils tribute band “Whammer Jammer” – blowing the roof off Joey Crowley’s Breakaway in Danvers last weekend.

  Speaking of Peter Myles, my first concert was the James Montgomery Blues Band at Malden High School’s Jenkins Auditorium in 1972 with Peter Myles’ “Asylum” opening for them. Second concert was Stevie Wonder at the same auditorium in 1973.

  Mail carrier since 1987, local musical legend for a lot longer – Peter Myles is a Malden institution. When they write the history of music in Malden, and the surrounding environs, Peter’s career as a drummer will be prominently mentioned. How many of you remember the many acts that Peter was involved with?



  Boston Skyline

  Blue Fox



  The Gordon Brothers

  Rebecca Paris

  Fast Forward

  Michael J’s in Crowd

  Full House

  The First Street Band

  New Life

  Keep It Real

  Whammer Jammer

  “This is the end, beautiful friend, this is the end, my only friend, the end” – there’s a lot to be said for having deep roots in your hometown. Take, for example, two candidates that currently hold political office in Malden: Councillor-at-Large Craig Spadafora and Ward 8 Councillor Jadeane (Rigano) Sica (congratulations, by the way, on topping your tickets like the champs you both are)! The Spadaforas and the Riganos (as well as the Sicas) have contributed to the betterment of Malden going back to the turn of the last century – immigrant roots firmly planted with hard work, dedication to family and a love of Malden – like many Italian immigrants of the day settling in Ward 2, Edgeworth. Both families worked hard. They also played hard. Both families have worked towards the goal of an easier life for their children, and their families’ children.

  Craig’s grandfather, Anthony “Papa” Spadafora, passed away at age 85 on May 22, 2010, but not before leaving a legacy of achievements that will live for many years throughout the city of Malden. A self-made man but an unfortunate product of the times, Tony quit school in the 10th grade to support his family and at age 17 joined the U.S. Navy to fight the “War for Civilization,” World War II. After the war Tony married the love of his life, Alice, raising four wonderful boys, Albert, Billy, Neal and Tony, who have also raised children of their own in Malden. All making their presence felt in Malden in one way or the other – for the good of Malden – each and every one.

  Public Service came calling for Tony; State Rep in 1954. Two stints as Police Commissioner, which he held right up until his death. You can always tell what a person is like by the charities he supports. Tony’s was the City of Saint Jude out of Montgomery, Alabama. His relentless quest to raise funds for St. Jude is legendary.

  Alice may have been the true love of his life, but running a close second was his beloved restaurant on Canal Street, Anthony’s of Malden. The doors opened in October of 1971 as a restaurant/lounge called “Gennetti’s” with good pal Henry Gennetti, Sr. In 1972 it became the iconic Anthony’s of Malden. Many of us over the past 50 years can tell a story or two of the most fun times in their lives spent at the restaurant, in the lounge, or in the function hall! It truly was a place where everybody knew your name – the Spadaforas becoming a household name throughout Malden for their hospitality, their loyalty to Malden, and the many friendships they’ve accumulated through the years. And continue to this very day.

  All of Tony and Alice’s sons have contributed to the good and welfare of Malden. Billy served on the City Council and, with his wife Donna, ran the legendary neighborhood slush shop Spadafora Slush & Ice Cream Shoppe before retiring this past year. Albert served on the board of the MRA as well as being a friend to the less fortunate all his working life. Young Tony and wife Mary raised three beautiful children while helping to make Anthony’s the iconic place it has become. Which brings me to Albert’s son Craig, who has balanced public service with a successful career, along with a big, beautiful family as if he were Tom Brady marching down the field on another touchdown drive. The longest consecutive serving Councillor Craig’s time in office has benefitted every single Maldonian. He’d have it no other way. His roots run too deep.

  I’ll deep dive into Jadeanne’s grandfather, Basil (Rigano), soon.

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