Two former West Roxbury legislators were honored with bridges being dedicated in their name this past weekend.
The bridge going over Bellevue Street near Centre Street was dedicated for former state Rep. Charles Doyle, who served in the House of Representatives from the early 1950s until 1988, when he decided not to run. He passed away in 2009.
The bridge going over Park Street near Corey Street, was dedicated in honor of former state Rep. Francis X. Coppinger. Francis X. Coppinger is the father of current state Rep. Ed Coppinger, D-West Roxbury. And Coppinger's honor surprised both generations.
Ed Coppinger explained how the naming caming about: “Senator Rush is so aware of and so interested in West Roxbury's history. He did a great job in recognizing that history by taking it upon himself to file and help pass legislation to rename these two bridges after Representative Doyle and my father."
"I know that my father was very surprised and honored to have a bridge named after him. I know the Doyle family was very thankful as well. Senator Rush and I both have big shoes to fill as the legislators from West Roxbury and we work as hard as we can everyday to make sure West Roxbury is as well represented today as it was by Representative Doyle and my father," said Coppinger to West Roxbury Patch.
The bridges were dedicated in a ceremony that started at the Charles Doyle Bridge and then moved onto the Francis X. Coppinger Bridge.
State Sen. Mike Rush, D-Norfolk/Suffolk, Francis Coppinger and family, Mass Department of Transportation Secretary Richard Davey and members of the Doyle family all attended, as did City Councilors Matt O'Malley, Felix Arroyo, and John Connolly.
Rush wrote about the bridge dedications on his Facebook page: "Great afternoon celebrating two outstanding former West Roxbury legislators thanks to bills passed by the Legislature and signed by the Governor. The late former Rep. Charles Doyle and former Rep. Francis Coppinger were honored for their service to the people of the Commonwealth. Very special thanks to Transportation Secretary Rich Davey, Mayor Tom Menino, Representatives Ed Coppinger, Walter Timilty, and Alice Peisch; Boston City Councilors Matt O'Malley, John Connolly, Stephen J. Murphy, Felix G. Arroyo and Ayana Presley; Clerk Maura Hennigan and Lord Mayor Richie Gormley for making the event one to remember!"
Both bridges span the Commuter Rail’s Needham line.