The Phoenix’s Peter Kadzis says farewell to former Boston city councilor Dapper O’Neil, who died earlier today.
Kadzis, who understands Boston’s neighborhood politics as well as anyone, manages the difficult task of explaining Dapper’s unique appeal while refraining from paying him tribute, writing that O’Neil “began his career as a political joke, and he ended it as a municipal embarrassment. But along the way, he won the affections of legions of blue-collar Bostonians by tirelessly defending their interests.”
Unlike, say, the late Jimmy Kelly, O’Neil did not grow in office. His nasty exterior masked a nasty interior. But I’m sure he was loyal to his friends and nice to his neighbors, and they’re entitled to miss him. No doubt Boston Herald columnist Howie Carr, who wrote a column about the ailing Tom Finneran today that was hateful even by Carr’s standards, is penning a tribute to the Dap even as we speak.