BOSTON • Survivors, residents and state officials were among the thousands gathered in silence across the Boston area Monday afternoon, one week after deadly explosions erupted near the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
At 2:50 p.m. — exactly one week after the bombings — many bowed their heads and cried at the makeshift memorial on Boylston Street, three blocks from the site of the explosions, where bouquets of flowers, handwritten messages, and used running shoes were piled on the sidewalk.
Bridget Horne, 28, who finished the marathon minutes before the explosions, spent the moment of silence locked in a group hug with other survivors.
Horne, clad in her bright-blue marathon jacket, had run to Boyston Street from her South Boston office with several colleagues to mark the moment. It was her first time returning to the scene since the day of the attack.
"I just need to be with people who were there," she said.
Two bombs exploded a week ago Monday as runners were crossing the finish line about four hours into the marathon. Three people were killed and more than 180 were injured. Many lost limbs.
A little more than a mile away, hundreds of state employees gathered outside the Massachusetts Statehouse to observe the moment of silence.
Gov. Deval Patrick bowed his head, standing with Lt. Gov. Timothy Murray, Attorney General Martha Coakley, Secretary of State William Galvin and House Speaker Robert DeLeo on a landing on the great front steps of the capitol.
"God bless the people of Massachusetts. Boston Strong," Patrick said when the moment had ended.
The officials departed without any further words as church bells echoed across the city.
The silence was broken on Boylston Street when a Boston police officer pumped his fists in the air and the crowd erupted in applause.
They quietly sung ‘God Bless America’ before starting to leave the area.
Earlier, many Boston residents headed back to workplaces and schools for the first time since a dramatic week came to an even more dramatic end. Traffic was heavy on major arteries into the city Monday morning, and nervous parents dropped their children off at schools, some for the first time since the attacks.
Authorities on Friday had made the unprecedented request that residents stay at home during the manhunt for suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. He was discovered that evening hiding in a boat covered by a tarp in suburban Watertown.
At the Snowden International School on Newbury Street, a high school set just a block from the bombing site, jittery parents dropped off children as teachers — some of whom had run in the race — greeted each other with hugs.
Carlotta Martin, 49, of Boston, said that leaving her kids at school has been the hardest part of getting back to normal.
"We’re right in the middle of things," Martin said outside the school as her children, 17-year-old twins and a 15-year-old, walked in, glancing at the police barricades a few yards from the school’s front door.
"I’m nervous. Hopefully, this stuff is over," she continued. "I told my daughter to text me so I know everything’s okay."
The city is beginning to reopen sections of the six-block site around the bombing that killed three people and wounded more than 180.
On Norfolk Street, where the brothers lived, neighbors said they thought they saw some more detectives Monday morning. But unlike Friday, the street was open.
Outside City Paint, the paint store a half-block from the brothers’ home, Brian Cloutier smoked a cigarette." We’ll get back to normal," he said. "Cambridge and Boston are resilient."Next Page >
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