April 21, 2013

Boston Strong

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Yesterday I had the honor of participating in the incredibly moving opening ceremony at Fenway Park honoring the first responders, law enforcement, race staff and (especially) the victims of  Boston Marathon bombings.  I was one of 40 or so other BAA volunteers who donned the yellow jacket, stood along Fenway’s Green Monster and joined the crowd of 35,000 as we proudly belting out the National Anthem.

Across the country, millions watched coverage of the ceremony. Across town at the Boston Garden, a similar scene unfolded at the start of the Bruins’ game against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

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After any tragedy, sporting events have always played an important role in our collective healing. Whether in person or tuning in on TV, we gather publically at sporting events for the first time to dry our tears, heal our mental wounds and to try to resume normalcy.

The process started last week in the aftermath of the bombings. Every major sporting event paid tribute to the bombing victims and stood with Boston. Rivalries were put aside. The nation’s collective thoughts turned to Boston in prayer, condolences, pride and defiance. Which brings me the images.

This is my first blog post since last Tuesday, when I posted images of the attacks with a writeup of what I saw, first hand. I tried, but couldn’t put together a blog post since then. I spent my free time watching the news and talking with friends who shared the experience on some level. I also spent time going through images I shot that day.

These three were taken about an hour before the attacks. Candid portraits of random marathon finishers whose expressions capture the range emotions that and every marathoner goes through in a 26.2 race. Emotions that, for some reason, seem to be more intense when running the Boston Marathon.

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Pain. Joy. Pride.

Last week, we were all marathoners. We shared the pain, joy and pride of the grueling 5 day race that started with the bombings. We shared the pain from and shock when that unfathomable act of evil shattered the day — shattered our world. Five days later we shared the joy as we celebrated the capture of “white hat suspect.” We share the pride and gratitude in our first responders and law enforcement who sprung into action so quickly and acted so bravely and relentlessly.

And we shared the pride in Boston. Strong.

Please remember Martin Richard, Krystle Campbell, Lu Lingzi and Sean Collier. Support their families and the other victims of the Boston Marathon bombings by donating to The One Fund.

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