Bernie To The Rescue

Published by Chris Wangler - June 24, 2020.

On Wednesday afternoon, a minivan nearly knocked down a special memorial for a Waltham veteran―but an alert public works supervisor rushed in to save the day.

The crash happened around 1:30 p.m. when the white vehicle rode up the curb and onto the grass at Linden and Main Streets.

A right-turn sign was uprooted and a City of Waltham concrete planter was turned upside down. The minivan also struck but did not take down a veteran square sign.

The driver was not injured in the single-vehicle crash.

A white minivan ran off the road Wednesday, nearly knocking over a veteran square sign.



Waltham first responders were quickly on scene, but so was Bernie McDonald, an assistant superintendent with Consolidated Public Works. He just happened to be in the area.

Bernie quickly summoned a city backhoe. As soon as the minivan was towed away, he helped set the memorial sign upright―a small gesture with an important meaning.


Roughly four years ago, on June 16, 2016, the veteran square was dedicated to Virginia “Ginny” Cronin Hays. Ginny was the first female veteran from Waltham to receive such an honor.

After losing friends in World War II, she enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Women’s Reserve.

Ginny served two years as a corporal in North Carolina and Virginia, providing counseling services to soldiers returning from the war.

Upon returning to Waltham, she raised five children with her husband in Ellison Park while working as a personnel director at Polaroid.

Ginny’s dedication to the Waltham community included more than 50 years’ involvement with the Waltham Historical Society. She passed away in 2013.