The idea that the streets in America are paved with gold has always been a nearly undefeatable idea in the Third World.
The hope that if one can just get to the promised land – the American land of opportunity – that earning money will be easy and relative riches will literally be handed over. I’m sure it’s a belief that brings about the necessary hope that is required to make it through a difficult life of poverty; in fact, I’m certain that’s the case because I have personally heard those laments over the telephone and in e-mails or Facebook postings.
However, the reality is that once one arrives in an American place like Chelsea, the streets are not paved with gold.
The harsh reality for so many that came here illegally (and some legally) from Central America over the last 10 years is that things aren’t easy. Many came here with the belief that they would live comfortably – changing the prospects of a family overnight. In large part, millions of those that came were men, husbands, breadwinners, responsible people looking to nab a few golden streets to send back home via Western Union or Ria or whatever new multi-service center is popular/cheap.
But a hard journey northward led to even more difficult times once here as these men struggled to make very little money and could ill afford to live. Some became estranged from the very families they had come here precisely to support, and inflation back home made their dollars less valuable.
Some of these men eventually re-married once here for awhile; or they fell into a life in the fast lane; or they just become lost in a far away place.
And they didn’t send as much money as they had hoped.
But make no mistake, they did and still do send money.
The Record reported last year that in 2012, nearly $250 million cash left the communities of Chelsea, Revere, East Boston and Everett in the form of remittances (money sent back to one’s home country). Some $2 billion left the state of Massachusetts alone in 2012. That’s a fortune, and most of it went to Central America – specifically El Salvador and Guatemala. The paper is still waiting to get those same numbers for 2013 from the state, but early reports are that even more was remitted.
Consulates from those countries told the Record in that very same report last year that their countries are deeply dependent upon money sent to family members from American relatives. It has become an important part of life in their countries.
And so what about those countries?
If you talk to assimilated natives of those particular countries – and really any country with a large remittance culture – they will tell you (maybe only secretly) that sending so much money home has ruined the society. People who keep residences in their home countries will tell you that they cannot find anyone to hire in order to maintain those properties. So many formerly hard-working people prefer to just wait for the weekly remittance from America. Why work when money just pours in from Western Union regularly?
This isn’t only in Central America, again. It’s the status quo wherever large sums of remittance money make up a significant portion of a country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Then there’s the problem with what happens to a poor economy when so much money starts rolling in without anything being produced or anybody earning said money. Prices skyrocket for food and housing. Land prices go through the roof. Heavy taxes are imposed. Everything all the sudden costs way more than it did, and the money that rolls in suddenly isn’t enough. The more money that is sent, the shorter it stretches.
Then the frantic phone calls begin to come – the money you sent isn’t enough. We need more.
What once cost $1 is now $10.
Now, there are hundreds of first-person reports of dangerous, blood-thirsty gangs that have emerged and are terrorizing the population – especially the women and young girls, so we’re told.
Is it no wonder?
All the men, husbands and responsible folks left years ago in order to make money in America and send it home. They are not there to protect their wives or ex-wives, their mothers and daughters. As is commonly said on the farm: when no one is guarding the hen house, the fox has a field day.
Those left are criminals who have run afoul of American laws and have been deported home, or young men whose father’s have not raised them and for whom the remittance wagon has lulled them into a stupor. Worse yet, organized drug cartels take over entire cities – operating their illicit organizations and stealing remittance money.
To get away from it all, right now we have hundreds of thousands of young adults and older teens pouring over the border to get to America by whatever means necessary. They are certainly fleeing violence, but there is also an aspect of them fleeing in order to get a job and send more money home.
That was expressly said by two women who spoke last week at the Collaborative – one of which who said she needed to send money home to her mother as soon as possible. Naturally, $1 doesn’t go as far as it used to and people need to eat.
The remittance culture needs to be addressed within this debate, but no one wants to talk about it. Just like Broadway Chelsea seems to be ground zero for the unaccompanied minor debate, it is also ground zero for cash leaving the country. Millions upon millions of dollars leave the community via Broadway Chelsea every year. Just a million of that money would transform the outlook of business on Broadway. That’s why this system cripples the community – puts local business out of business because any and all disposable income is being sent instead of spent.
A few months ago, I asked Gov. Deval Patrick about this very issue when he came to Chelsea. In a one-on-one conversation with him, I told him this is threatening all the Gateway Cities in the state and also the countries where the money is going.
He had no answers, and didn’t seem to like the subject, but he did turn the conversation around on me in order to ask what I would do.
Here’s what should be done. Tax every remittance transaction with a $5 surcharge that goes directly back to a community fund that would pay for the increased services demanded by the arrival of unaccompanied minors and other malleable populations. People keep asking how are we going to pay for this influx; here’s the answer. Where there are lots of remittances, there will be lots of unaccompanied minors. Additionally, the remittance system is by and large used by the folks who need this help. Those paying property taxes to the City that support schools/services are not the folks that typically are going to need these expanded and expensive services. Is it really fair to lay it all on them?
Mr. Governor, that’s one thing I would do – and now.
If we do not address this culture, it will only become more of a vicious circle and even more people will suffer and die. The remittance culture is a phantom; a lie that really only enriches the companies that ship the money and the governments/criminals where it ends up. It might help the people for a time, but not ever as much as they had hoped. Central America is now feeling this pain of what happens when an economy imports billions of dollars a year without producing anything; what happens when families are broken up by thousands of miles via an immigration system that is complicated; and most importantly, what happens when the streets don’t turn out to be paved with gold.
The Chelsea Collaborative and the MIRA Coaltion – both pro-immigration reform groups – will hold a roundtable meeting on July 10 to address the hot-button issue of unaccompanied children crossing the southern border illegally.
The meeting will take place from 3-5 p.m. at the Collaborative on Broadway and will focus on strategies to support local families and children caught up in this situation.
The Collaborative said that government statistics show that unaccompanied children crossing the southwestern border have increased 92 percent over the last year. The children range in age from 4 to 17 and are coming from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. Many have families in the U.S., including some in the Boston area.
Those sitting at the table formulating solutions will be legal service providers, community-based organizations, refugee resettlement agencies, immigrant advocacy agencies, Central American consulates and others.
Following that, at 5:30 p.m., the Collaborative will sponsor a ‘Know Your Rights Immigration Summit’ at Chelsea High School. The focus of the summit will be discussing unaccompanied children who have crossed the border and there will also be an update on deferred action – which was announced two years ago this summer.
Thanks go to so many gardeners, friends and local merchants for all the good will and hard work that went into our 4th Annual Art Walk “Scarecrows in the Garden” and “Quilt Raffle” fundraiser at the Chelsea Community Garden. A few special shout outs must go to:
Groundskeepers Joe Reese and Enesa for their hard work the weeks prior to get the garden looking so lovely.
Maureen for her gorgeous entranceway.
Angela for donating her beautiful quilt.
Ida for volunteering to MC the raffle pulling on Sunday.
Melissa Shook for taking photos (www.facebook.com/chelseacommunitygardens”Check out Facebook) and donating her marvelous blobs for our fundraiser.
Alison and Daniel for donating house plants to the fundraiser.
Enesa and her daughter Mirela, Evelyn and Manny’s daughter, niece and friends for potting up marigolds and strawberries for the fundraiser.
Evelyn for her handcrafted jewelry raffle prizes.
Judy Komarow and her high school senior year artists for exhibiting the bird houses and donating them to our fundraiser.
Marianne Ramos for exhibiting her flying fish and donating them to our fundaraiser.
Marianne, Melissa and the Senior Center artists- Enesa and Joe Reese for the beautiful Girl Scout Pumpkin-head patch.
Joe Fuchs, master salesman for his arms length selling technique, unbelievable!
Our treasurer Eliza, for managing the coffee cans – we set a record. $831.31. Yes, indeed, we managed it! Let’s go build a shade shelter! Thank you everyone.
Bob Kowalik, our Master Urban Gardener for volunteering as “the Doctor is In.”
Hilary Parasmo from DCR for her info table on the city’s Tree Initiative.
And all our guest scarecrow artists: Helen and her pirate (Helen’s 95!), Jennifer K and her friend and their dandelions, Margaret Lewis and her pumpkin spice, Marianne’s flying fish, Chelsea High student’s bird houses, and Chelsea Senior Center paper mache heads.
Of course, all our gardeners who took the time to build a scarecrow for the exhibit.
Sal Mancini for making our wooden fruit medallions.
Of course, all our gardeners who came to the garden for our “painting party” and created 15 fun medallions to show off our fruit areas.
Arnie Casavant for donating his time to teach the “Year of the Fruit” drawing workshop.
Eliza and Shawn – point people for the drawing workshop.
Maren Olsen, Chelsea High for donating materials for the workshop
Bea Cravatta and Melanie Torres – Chelsea Community Schools
Rob and Linda for making the day of tributes a meaningful remembrance for all.
Manny for his baking his wonderful cookies, year in and year out!
Liberty Mutual service volunteers who came down in May to begin the garden spruce up.
ROCA youth for their fun paper cup arrow signs directing the way along the alley.
All the gardeners who stepped up to set up and clean up both days, sell raffle tickets and act as ambassadors to our Art Walk guests. A big effort, and done well. Many, many thanks.
Joe Greene and Charcoll for organizing the Art Walk and the opportunity for this garden magic
And our local merchants for their generosity. Please patronize them and thank them!
The City Council unanimously adopted the $138.1 million budget proposed by City Manager Jay Ash for FY’15, but not without some cuts first. While the funding is now set for municipal services starting on July 1st, both the police and fire overtime accounts were cut from the request filed by Ash.
“Overall, we agree with the continued direction that the city manager is steering government, and why not: we got two bond rating increases and excellent report cards on our general fiscal health. However, overtime continues to be a concern for me and many of us on the Council, so we took action to reduce both the police and fire overtime accounts so that it can be known that there isn’t an open checkbook and anything can go,” explained Councillor Leo Robinson, whose proposed cuts passed by 7-4 margins.
For his part, Ash said he recognized and got the message from the Council, but instead wanted to focus on all the positives that this, his fourteenth municipal budget had to offer.
“This budget contains several areas of expansion in services that will combine to continue the remarkable transformation and growth our community is undergoing,” said Ash. “The budget addresses numerous issues that are important to city councillors and residents of Chelsea, and it will make sure we remain both fiscally and programmatically strong.”
Council President Matt Frank concurred with Ash’s assessment.
“This budget continues our focus on smartly spending our limited resources to get the maximum results,” he said. “I’m particularly happy to see the components of our 10-point plan for public safety funded, and thrilled that the budget is balanced without any fiscal gimmicks or need to run to voters to ask them for a Proposition 2 ½ override.”
The FY’15 budget contains funding to hire five new police officers to support the 10-point public safety plan to which Frank referred. That action and others are consistent with the policing strategy that dropped reported crime by 25 percent last year in Chelsea.
“Again, smart spending to get maximum results,” said Frank.
The spending plan includes $500,000 for capital improvements to be paid for through receipts as opposed to funded through borrowing.
“We’re making a conscious effort to continue to spend on capital while reducing our overall debt. With the rebuilding of the Clark Avenue School and the reconstruction of Broadway on the near horizon, we want to do everything we can to put ourselves into the position of maintaining affordable debt loads while still undertaking necessary capital improvements,” said Councillor Brian Hatleberg.
The budget also funds the Inspectional Service Department (ISD) for the beefed-up neighborhood code enforcement team that is about to launch to secure health and safety improvements in housing for residents and first responders.
“That’s an important initiative and a major reason to be excited about all the progress this budget will help produce in the upcoming fiscal year,” said Councillor Clifford Cunningham.
More spending on schools, including an additional $300,000 to address social/emotional issues that hamper increasingly more school children, caught the eye of Councillor Chris Cataldo, the Council’s delegate to the School Committee.
“Our kids have increasing needs which require even greater responses. We’re providing the school department with additional resources to address those needs and we’re confident that our schools will continue to be great places for students to get an even greater education,” said Cataldo.
Overall, the budget increases 5 percent above the FY’14 budget.
Of the $6.7m in increased spending, more than half is accounted for by mandatory spending on education in the City’s public schools, charter schools and Northeast Voke. Negotiated pay raises for union employees, increases in employee health insurance premiums and the higher spending on infrastructure and other capital projects round out the major causes of the budget escalation.
“We’re maintaining our fiscal integrity, continuing to offer great services and advancing our goals of investing in our community. We’re certain to especially keep a close eye on areas of spending which threaten future balanced budgets, like wages, health insurance, retirement costs and the like, and we’ll continue to provide the oversight necessary to reduce the threats to fiscal stability that they cause,” said Councillor Dan Cortell.
Revenue growth, including from the City’s annual 2 ½ percent increase in property taxes, additional state aid and economic development activities, is expected to fund the increased spending.
“Our entrepreneurial activities are helping to raise much needed new revenues,” said Councillor Paula Barton. “It’s great that we’re able to do more because in large part we’re bringing in new hotels, refinancing old debt and finding ways of generating new revenues outside of asking taxpayers for huge increases.”
The financial attention at City Hall now turns to closing out the current fiscal year. Ash said no major surprises are expected, so he expects the City’s fiscal year to end in the black once again.
“We long ago realized that everything else for the positive happens as a result of first having our fiscal house in order. That fiscal house, in fact, is well in order, so many other good things will continue to happen for us well into the next fiscal year,” said Ash.
Chelsea Educator; Williams SchoolTeacher of the Year 1993-1994; Nominated as Mass. Teacher of the Year 1999
Mariellen T. (McFayden) Mulligan grew up in Chelsea, later resided in Lynnfield and spent the past 10 years being cared for at Spaulding Hospital North Shore in Salem. The care she received there was exceptional which allowed her to count it as a home away from home.
She attended Our Lady of the Assumption Elementary School from grades 1 to 8 and later attended Mount St. Joseph Academy during her high school years. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Boston State College and earned a Masters Degree from Salem State College.
Mariellen spent continuous summers with her family in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire. When she was old enough she worked as a waitress at the World Famous Allen A. Resort which was located in Wolfeboro on Lake Wentworth. During her summer free time she enjoyed swimming, waterskiing and boating. She also worked at the Filene’s Basement in Boston in the luggage department while she completed her undergraduate and graduate studies.
She was accomplished in the area of needlepoint and created many outstanding pieces. Mariellen was a remarkable artist and received many awards for her beautiful and creative pictures.
Mariellen spent 30 enthusiastic years in the Chelsea Public Schools while being assigned to almost every grade from third up to high school as well as being a Title I reading teacher. During that time she completed her teaching assignments with the utmost professionalism and was described as being “an outstanding teacher who inspires her students to reach their expectations.” An administrator stated that “she has a unique ability as an educator to provide a classroom environment that reflects her enthusiasm and energy.”
She was elected Teacher of the Year at the Williams School for the school year 1993-1994. She was also nominated for the 1999 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year Award. She was an outstanding role model for so many students as well as for so many future teachers who she trained from Boston University. One of the student teachers, Missy Ugland has remained in touch with her throughout the years, visiting from Wisconsin when she was able and recently sending post cards from the Czech Republic. Although limited in her physical ability, she never allowed circumstances to prohibit her from carrying out her professional duties. The wind beneath her wings can always be attributed to the limitless support she received from her devoted father, mother and sister.
One of the highlights of her teaching career, was when presidential candidate Paul Tsongas visited her classroom to discuss some of his educational policies. Always demonstrating total involvement as a teacher, she demonstrated total devotion and involvement towards her only daughter, Allison. Allison was the center of her life. Together they formed a special bond. Her love for her daughter was instrumental in overcoming obstacles time after time.
She was the loving and devoted mother of Allison Mulligan of Methuen; beloved daughter of Mary (Nelson) McFayden of Woburn and the late Edward McFayden; dear sister of Janet McFayden Ruggiero and her husband, Louis of Woburn and Edward McFayden, Jr. and his wife, Bozena of Ipswich. She is also survived by many loving nieces and nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins and caring friends.
Her Funeral will begin from the Frank A. Welsh & Sons Funeral Home, 718 Broadway, Chelsea today, Thursday, May 15 at 10 a.m. followed by a Funeral Mass at St. Rose Church, 600 Broadway, Chelsea at 11 a.m. Services will conclude with Interment at Holy Cross Cemetery, Malden. Relatives and friends are most kindly invited to attend. Should friends desire, contributions in her memory may be made to the Spaulding Hospital North Shore, 1 Dove Ave. Salem, MA 01970. For directions or to send expressions of sympathy, please visitwww.WelshFuneralHome.com.
Professional Singer and Self Taught Musician; Worked for Mass. Department of Revenue
Antonetta E. (Mongiello)Tumminello a lifelong Chelsea resident, passed away at the Kaplan Family Hospice House in Danvers following a brief illness. She was 85 years old.
Born in Chelsea, the daughter of the late Luigi and Elvira (Munzione) Mongiello, she attended local schools and raised her family in Chelsea. She also worked outside of the home as a Tax Clerk for 15 years with the Massachusetts Department of Revenue. She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Joseph in 2005.
Antonetta was a professional singer and vocalist performing for many years in the Boston and Southern New England area. She was a self taught musician who loved music as well as playing the piano. Antonetta was dedicated to her family and also held a strong devotion to Our Lady of Grace Church.
The beloved wife of the late Joseph Tumminello, she was the devoted mother of Rachel Finn and her husband, Martin of North Reading; dear sister of Mary Mongiello of Chelsea, Laura Wangrocki of Revere, Richard Mongiello of Chelsea and the late Carmen Mongiello and Josephine Weiner; cherished grandmother of Matthew Finn of North Reading and the adored aunt of Cheryl Gideon of Salem and Robert Weiner of Wakefield.
Her Funeral will be held from the Frank A. Welsh & Sons Funeral Home, 718 Broadway, Chelsea on Friday, May 16 at 9:30 a.m. followed by a Funeral Mass at Our Lady of Grace Church, 59 Nichols St., Chelsea at 10:30 a.m. Services will conclude with Interment at Holy Cross Cemetery, Malden. Relatives and friends are most kindly invited to attend. Visiting hours will be held at the Welsh Funeral Home today, Thursday, from 4 to 8 p.m. Should friends desire, contributions may be made in her name to the Kaplan Family Hospice House, 78 Liberty St. Danvers, MA 01923. For directions or to send expressions of sympathy, please visitwww.WelshFuneralHome.com.
Edward ‘Sonny’ Doherty, Jr.
Retiree of Samuel Cabot Stains of Newburyport
Edward V. “Sonny” Doherty, Jr. of Chelsea passed away peacefully at home surrounded by family on May 8 following a long heroic battle with cancer. He was 76 years old.
A proud retired 43 year employee of Samuel Cabot Stains of Newburyport, he is survived by his childhood sweetheart and wife of 54 years Nancy (Brochu) Doherty. He was the loving and devoted father of Kathleen Fazio of Plymouth, William Doherty and his wife, Nancy of Walpole, Brian Doherty of Chelsea and Eileen Vitale and her husband, John of Peabody; beloved “Papa” to Christopher and Ryan Doherty of Walpole, Brianna and Mike, Jr. of Plymouth and Nicholas and Nina of Peabody and is also lovingly survived by his sister, Jean McCarthy and brother, Richard Doherty.
Funeral arrangements were by the Smith Funeral Home of Chelsea. Interment was at Woodlawn Cemetery, Everett. The family expresses sincere gratitude to Hope Health Hospice and the “ladies” of Senior Bridge for their compassionate care during his illness. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 75817, Topeka, Kansas 66675. To send a message of condolence to his family, please visitwww.smithfuneralhomes.com
George Havens, Jr.
George A. Havens, Jr. of Chelsea passed away on April 21 at the Lighthouse Nursing and Care Center in Revere. He was 83 years old.
Born in Hudson Falls, NY and a benchwork assembler at General Electric in Lynn for over 25 years, he was the devoted husband of the late Alice (Gilmore); beloved father of Richard Havens of Haverhill, Irene Loussedes and her husband,Tony of Chelsea, Corinne Nason and her husband, John of Connecticut, Eugene Havens of Revere and the late Lawrence Havens of New York and the late Thomas Havens; cherished grandfather of Anthony and Edward Loussedes, Carolyn Trigillo and Paul and Richard Havens, Jr. He is also lovingly survived by his great grandchildren: Joshua, Oliver, Noah and Elliot.
Funeral arrangements were by the Smith Funeral Home, Chelsea. Committal Services and entombment were private.
President of Chelsea High School, Class of 1966
Charles Christopher of Alburtis, PA and Chelsea died after a long illness. He was 65 years old.
Christopher, also known as Chris, was the lead acupressist for the Leigh Valley Health Network’s pain management department. During the past 15 years he helped thousands overcome chronic pain.
Christopher was President of Chelsea High School, Class of 1966, A US Marine veteran of Vietnam, a successful salesman, expert in alternative medicine and a philanthropist.
He leaves his son, Adam of Chelsea, a special friend, Suzanne Ickles of
Alburtis, PA; his brothers: Richard and his wife, Lena of Saugus and Lenny of Methuen; his nieces: Nicole, Danielle, Renee and Melanie and nephews: Jason, Gary and Nick as well as his uncle, Jake Amato of Everett. He also leaves many loving cousins.
Funeral arrangements were by Nicos C. Elias Funeral Home: Tel 610-433-2200. There will be a celebration of life ceremony in the near future.
Worked at John Hancock Insurance Co. Restaurant
Aidee R. (Rodriguez) Solis of Chelsea, formerly of Argentina, died on May 11 at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. She was 83 years old.
Prior to her retirement in 1995, she worked for John Hancock as a waitress in their restaurant.
She was the devoted mother of Adriana Graham of Chelsea, the great grandmother of Sasha Nicolau and her husband, Fabio of Danvers and Danielle Mitchell and her husband, Glen of Chelsea and is also lovingly survived by her great granddaughter Amelia Nicolau. Family and friends are kindly invited to attend her Funeral from the Smith Funeral Home, 125 Washington Avenue, Chelsea on Saturday, May 17 at 8:30 a.m. followed by a Funeral Mass celebrated in St. Michael the Archangel Chapel on the campus of the Chelsea Soldiers Home, 91 Crest Avenue, Chelsea at 10 o’clock. Service will conclude with entombment at Holy Cross Mausoleum, Malden. Expressions of sympathy in Aidee’s name may be made to St. Michael’s Chapel. To send a message of condolence to Aidee’s family, please visit www.smithfuneralhomes.com
“Come on out for this year’s Chelsea Chase 5k, starting at 10am on May 10th at the Dockside. Here are some of last year’s runners who supported the Jordan Boys & Girls Club and the Chelsea Police Relief Association at this event in 2013.”
The Jordan Boys & Girls Club will once again be collaborating with the Chelsea Police Relief Association to host the 3rd Annual Chelsea Chase 5K, which takes place on Saturday, May 10th with a 10am start. The start and finish will be outside of the Dockside in Chelsea, one of our sponsors who will be serving a pasta dinner post-race to all the runners and volunteers. To register to run, go to Racewire.com and search “Chelsea Chase”. You can also get a link to this site or get a paper application from Lisa at Lgillis@bgcb.org or stop by the Club anytime to get more info. You can also connect with Lt. Ed Conley at Chelsea Police for more info. Thank you to the companies who have committed to sponsoring this event as of this writing: State Garden & Olivia’s Organics, Eastern Salt, Eastern Express Car Wash, The Architectural Team, Performance Physical Therapy, Allen’s Perfumers, Broadway Family Dental, Chelsea Bank, Marriot Hotel, Susan Gallant, Mystic Brewery, Aquafina, TD Bank, and many more who will be coming out to volunteer and support the event. This has become a fantastic community gathering and if you are interested in volunteering, sponsoring, or running, please reach out to Lisa at the email above or call the Boys & Girls Club at 617-884-9435 x5472. All proceeds support both the Jordan Club and the Chelsea Police Relief Association.
Rain fell and the snow continued to melt earlier this week, including on this steel support
under the Tobin Bridge on Broadway. However, the relief of spring-like weather was
squashed by the return of winter weather mid-week. Not to fear, more drips appear to be
on tap for the coming week.
The mother of a Revere woman, Michelle Dauwer, murdered in Chelsea and District Attorney Dan Conley are renewing a call for witnesses to come forward and help in solving the brutal Dec. 10 crime.
“My daughter was murdered,” said June Dauwer. “I want justice for Michelle, but I believe that justice will be served in a court of law. I have the utmost faith in the judicial system and I know that they will bring peace and justice for Michelle when they arrest the person who took her so tragically from me and my family. But that won’t happen on its own. Right now, someone out there knows who hurt Michelle and took her life. That person has a chance to do the right thing: Call Chelsea Police. Speak up and tell the truth for the wonderful girl we lost.”
DA Conley said authorities believe there are people in Chelsea who know what happened to Dauwer on Dec. 10 and could help break open the case.
“In almost every case we investigate, someone knows what happened and who’s responsible,” he said. “We believe the same is true in Michelle’s case. The person with this knowledge has a chance to do the right thing. They can help police identify Michelle’s killer and help bring her mother some peace of mind. There might also be someone out there who saw or heard something unusual near Broadway, Everett Avenue, or Third Street on the night of Dec. 9 into the morning of Dec. 10. They might not recognize the importance of these observations and might not have thought to share it with police. If you have this sort of information, no matter how small or peripheral it might seem, we’re asking you to share it with Chelsea or State police. Every piece of evidence counts.”
On Dec. 10, Chelsea Police responded to the area of Broadway and Congress Avenue just after 1 a.m. for a report of a woman lying in the street. Civilian witnesses told police that the woman had been walking from the direction of nearby Everett Avenue when she fell to the ground.
Emergency medical technicians rushed her to Massachusetts General Hospital, where she died later that morning.
June Dauwer said her daughter deserves justice and should remembered as a caring and loving individual. She took offense at comments in the Record last month made by other family members and friends who June believes mischaracterized her daughter.
“Michelle was a wonderful, caring and loving mother, daughter, sister, niece, cousin and friend,” she said. “She was always ready with a smile for everyone and her infectious laugh touched friends and strangers. She was full of love. She was generous and kind, even to a fault. It was deeply painful to read what some people said about Michelle while the rest of our family is still grieving her loss. Those of us who knew and loved her are still distraught over her murder. We don’t have time for gossip, innuendo, and petty remarks. Michelle was above those things and she would want us to be above them, too. We knew the beautiful girl and wonderful woman she was. Anyone who would speak badly about her must never have known her at all.”
As always, tipsters can contact Chelsea Police detectives at 617-466-4843. Those who wish to remain anonymous may also call the Chelsea Police CrimeStoppers tip line at 617-466-4880, text the word CHELSEA and their information to TIP411 (847411), or submit information online atwww.ChelseaPolice.com. If for any reason they don’t want to speak with Chelsea Police, they can also call the State Police Detective Unit at 617-727-8817.
A working fire at the base of the Beacon Street off-ramp on Feb. 21 stalled out traffic in all directions, including on the Tobin Bridge. A faulty electrical connection in an exhaust fan caused the small fire
On Friday afternoon, Feb. 21, the Chelsea Fire Department responded to 66 Beacon St. for the report of a building fire. Engine 2, Tower 1 and the Deputy Chief responded from Central Fire Station along with Engine 1 from the Prattville Station and Ladder 2 from the Mill Hill Station.
The companies responding from Central Station reported heavy traffic congestion on Broadway, which delayed their response to the fire. This was the third time on Friday the fire department was delayed trying to get through Bellingham Square while responding to an emergency incident.
As the fire department arrived, the owner of the first floor unit at 66 Beacon St. stated his bathroom exhaust fan was on fire but he believed it was extinguished. The building is a 3-story structure with one condominium unit on each floor.
Crews pulled down the exhaust fan and found fire in the ceiling extending to the floor above through an open pipe chase. Engine 2′s crew advanced a hose line into the first floor while the crew from Ladder 2 searched the upper floors to evacuate the occupants.
A working fire assignment was ordered by Deputy Chief John Quatieri, which brought an addition engine to the fire along with an ALS ambulance unit to stand by.
Additional hose lines were brought into the building to extinguish the fire on floors 2 and 3 as Engine 1 and Engine 3 arrived.
Crews worked for approximately 90 minutes to extinguish the fire and to ensure the fire had not extended further. Ladder 2 positioned their truck across the Beacon Street off ramp in order to access the roof of the building. The ramp was ordered closed which caused major traffic problems on Rt. 1 North over the Tobin Bridge.
“The property owner certainly did the right thing by calling 9-1-1,” stated Deputy Chief Quatieri. “He used baking powder to extinguish the fire and noticed some burning embers around the exhaust fan housing so he call the fire department just to make sure the fire was out. If the owner had not called 9-1-1 when he did, the extent of the fire would have obviously been much worse.”
The department’s Fire investigation Unit determined a faulty electrical connection as the cause of the fire and estimated the damage at $75,000. The fire displaced four residents.
Though he couldn’t give an exact location, City Manager Jay Ash confirmed this week that a fifth hotel has reached a tentative agreement to build on a former industrial site near Broadway at the City Line of Chelsea and Revere.
“I can confirmed that a fifth hotel has a tentative agreement to be developed here,” Ash said. “The Wyndham Hotel and Residence Inn are already open, the TownePlace Suites is under construction on Central Avenue, and the Holiday Inn will break ground if and when the snow melts. Hotel number five will build on the strength of Chelsea’s now emerged lodging market, providing more great jobs, tremendous tax growth and further momentum for even further community investment and revitalization down the road.”
The announcement is a coup for Chelsea and keeps the ball rolling on what has been a prolific expansion in hotel development in the City. While the Wyndham opened a little over 10 years ago, the other hotels have just recently opened or are currently under construction. If built, the fifth hotel would be the fourth hotel to locate in Chelsea over a two-year period.
Ash would not confirm the exact location of the 5th hotel, but he did say that it was on a former industrial site along the city’s border with Revere. Speculation is that the site is on Broadway and, if so, will serve as another powerful “Welcome to Chelsea” statement like the hotel cluster off of the Rt. 1 South exit and the TownePlace just over the Chelsea Street Bridge do.
The previous four hotels will employ 40 or more people, and contribute more than $500,000 a year in tax revenues. Ash is said to be looking at hotel five to help finance approximately $50 million in capital improvements he had identified as necessary in the coming years, including a new school to replace the Clark Avenue School and the badly-needed reconstruction of Broadway.
“We’re not going to borrow ourselves into fiscal troubles, and will, instead, be entrepreneurial in our approach to raise new dollars to support the continued rebuilding and growth of our city,” said Ash. “In some places, officials would just ask for more property taxes from existing taxpayers through a Proposition 2 1/2 override. That’s not our approach here, and, instead, we’re working our economic development and other approaches hard and effective to produce the new tax revenue necessary to support the investments we want to make and our city critically needs.”
Ash said there is no need to worry that Chelsea has too many hotels to support each of them.
“We’re in a regional market and we are thinking regionally,” said Ash, who is a recognized leader in promoting regional approaches to economic vitality. “We’ve figured out something very special here in Chelsea: we’re closer to Downtown Boston and Logan Airport than most of Boston. Add a casino into the mix and I truly believe we can support even more than five hotels, and to that end and with that belief I’m continuing to work.”