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Michael Dukakis takes tumble for a cleaner Boston

Former Mass. Governor Michael Dukakis at the Democratic National Convention in July, 2016. Peter Foley/EPA

Michael Dukakis sometimes got roughed up politically as governor of Masschusetts and Democratic presidential nominee in 1988. Last week he got roughed up literally — all in the name of a cleaner Boston.

A passerby spotted Dukakis with blood on his face the morning of Dec. 8, but Dukakis said it was just a mishap. While picking up trash on the Emerald Necklace, he explained, “I reached down for a piece of litter and somehow tripped, falling flat on my face on the sidewalk.”

The 83-year-old former politician now serves as a professor of political science at Northeastern University, and has been known to clean up trash during his walk to work from Brookline.

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There’s no question about Dukakis’s dedication to eliminating waste of all kinds — not only is he on a one-man crusade against litter on the streets of Boston, he also encouraged Globe readers to leave their post-Thanksgiving turkey carcasses on his doorstep last year so that he could use them to make soup for his family.

His mishap last week resulted in “a lot of blood” and two stitches on his nose, he said, but he brushed off the injuries with characteristic aplomb later that day.

“No good deed goes unpunished!” he said.


Michael Levenson of the Globe staff contributed to this report. Jacey Fortin can be reached at jacey.fortin@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @JaceyFortin.