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April 17, 2013

Boston Copes With Bombing Aftermath

by Carolyn Presutti

The city of Boston, in the northeastern state of Massachusetts, is still reeling from Monday's twin bombings at the finish line of the Boston marathon. Three people are dead and more than 170 are injured as police and the FBI try to find the person who planted the devices.

It's still obvious a marathon was held here in Boston. And more obvious that something went wrong.

Four hours into the Boston marathon, one bomb exploded at the finish line and another 13 seconds later.  

Police and National Guard troops now protect a wide area around the crime scene.
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​​The city's police commissioner said investigators are sifting through the debris. Authorities have said the bombs were hidden in pressure cookers inside nylon duffel bags.  They contained materials like gun pellets and ball bearings. But they're not saying much more.   

“We are in the process of securing and processing the most complex crime scene that we've dealt with in the history of our department," said Ed Davis, Boston Police Commissioner.

The event shattered the city's 117th running of the oldest annual marathon in the world.

Marathon runners walked around today, easily identifiable in their blue and yellow jackets.  Some gazed at the finish line area for the first time since police had stopped the race after the blasts.  
 
One street over, some signs of the marathon are going away - shelved for another year.  But the scars will stay.  Heather Buda and Lisa Mara live three blocks from the finish line.

“It hits too close to home. Going to bed at night last night, I double bolted the door," Mara said. "You don't feel safe in an area where I've never not felt safe in.”

So, how does a tough, old city like Boston heal? By not changing a thing.  That's what Matt Thomas says.  It's his fourth Boston marathon and won't be his last. 

“That's what terrorists try to do, and it's our duty as citizens and free people not to let them prevail," he stated. "We have our freedoms and we aren't going to let something change that.”

President Obama says the American people refuse to be terrorized.  That's echoed by many runners here who hope to return to compete next year in defiance of the attack.