Eleven minutes before the hour of 3:00 pm. on Wednesday, church bells tolled across Boston to mark the two-year anniversary of the first bomb that exploded at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
Hundreds of people gathered on Boylston Street and at Government Center to both remember and to reflect. The midday stillness that reigned over the city for just a moment at 2:49 pm was punctuated by bells tolling from Old South Church.
No one had given the bombing anniversary a name, so Mayor Marty Walsh, working with ad professional Jenney Villone, called it One Boston Day. On City Hall plaza, Boston fire spokesman Steve McDonald reflected on its meaning:
“I mean two years ago, it was just a day like we’d never had in Boston. And I thought the Mayor’s idea of this One Boston Day, where a lot of random acts of kindness have been shown to people, it sets the right tone for remembering what this day means to people.”
On City Hall plaza Mayor Walsh stood with the family of 8-year old bombing victim Martin Richard and hundreds of other people. Shanta Hobsen of Boston stood among them:
“On this day today, I feel blessed that I’m here but it’s sad for someone else’s family who is not here. Cause no one carries a child for nine months and just looses a kid. So it’s a sad day for the families and the victims.”
The second-year anniversary commemoration occurred just days before a jury reconvenes to decide if convicted bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev will be sentenced to life in prison or death.
What else do we need to do? I just don't want it to be a one day of the year kind of thing --Donald Wright, at the second Anniversary of the Boston Marathon Bombing commemoration.