The East Arlington resident long known to oppose development of the Mugar property along Route 2 and a neighborhood defender against flooding is 91, and so she is stepping aside from Town Meeting.

Elsie Fiore listens as her proclamation is read on Monday, Dec. 12, 2016. / Susan Gilbert photoElsie Fiore listens as her proclamation is read on Monday, Dec. 12, 2016. / Susan Gilbert photo

Elsie Fiore announced at the start of the special session Feb. 12, that she would not seek reelection to the meeting. The longest-serving current member of Town Meeting has been in office 56 years.

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"We're lucky to have you," Moderator John Leone said, as the meeting applauded her.

In 2016, the selectmen delivered a proclamation honoring Fiore as an "unsung heroine, person of the year and legendary local." 

As reported by Legendary Locals of Arlington by Marjorie Howard and Barbara Goodman (Arcadia, 2015):

"If anyone thinks Elsie Fiore is too old or too tired to fight a project proposed for a wetland, they had better think again." The profile goes on to say that she helped lead the initial opposition, in 2015, to the Mugar project planned between Thorndike Field and Route 2. Her opposition to building on the site dates to 1970.

The current project has been delayed by appeals and continued town opposition

Information from the clerk's office and provided by Marie Krepelka, selectmen's administrator, shows Fiore was elected to Town Meeting in 1962, when her precinct at the time was No. 4 (now it is No. 2).

She served on the Conservation Commission from August 1972 to August 1981, the committee to procure independent survey of facilities of Arlington Schools, in 1975; the Committee to Study Senior Citizen Tax Rebate Program, in 1995; and the Uncle Sam Committee (appointed 2012).

She is the current measurer of wood & bark, appointed in 2012. (In Massachusetts, the title dates to the 18th century and refers to duties longer followed.)

One wag asked on a Facebook group Feb. 13: Who would now serve as the measurer of wood and bark? "[W]e could see a contested election in Town Meeting to see who succeeds Mrs. Fiore, who served in the position with honor and distinction for many years."

Elsie has four sons -- David, Carl, Peter (also a Town Meeting member) and Russell, eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

She and her late husband, Joseph, were married 49 years.

Dec. 13, 2016: Long a defender of East Arlington, Fiore gets her day 

This news brief was published was published Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018.