Boston Marathon Bombing Pulls City Together for 2015 Race

Boston Marathon bombingA woman who was an emergency responder during the deadly Boston Marathon bombing in April 2013 will be running in this year’s race to raise money for emergency services. Steffanie Laslo, 27, is running the streets of Boston now to train for the event. Her participation is one of the ways that the city affected by Boston Marathon bombing is pulling together for the  2015 race.

Laslo, who worked in the neurology department at the hospital, said she had not been in Boston long when she decided to work a shift during the race so other coworkers could attend. She was watching the race when she was called to the emergency room.

While her services weren’t necessary, Laslo said the moment is forever burned in her memory. The day inspired her to take a job in the emergency room at Massachusetts General Hospital, but it did not stop there. An emergency response marathon team was formed and Laslo decided joining it would be a good way to raise money for disaster preparation and emergency care for the hospital.

The 2015 Boston Marathon is set for Patriot’s Day on April 20 with activities leading up the race occurring throughout the weekend of April 17. Attendees and participants have not lost enthusiasm for the traditional race and the Boston Athletic Association is not deterring from any of the city’s past traditions and officials are looking at ways for the pain of the Boston Marathon bombing to continue to pull victims together and move the city forward.

Another couple who lost limbs in the Boston Marathon bombing are now using their prosthetic legs to inspire others. Jeff Bauman and Celeste Cocoran are part of the Boston Strong effort to show how the city, and the explosion’s victims, are recovering. Celeste Cocoran’s daughter, Sydney, was one witnesses to testify in the ongoing trail of Russian immigrant, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, charged in the attack. Sydney, a high school senior at the time, was at the finish line with her parents when the bomb went off. She said two men and emergency personnel saved her and her mother.

Meanwhile, the trial testimony in the Tsarnaev case continues with a focus on how he obtained a gun used in the aftermath of the attack to kill Sean Collier, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) police officer, carjack a vehicle and then initiate a police shootout. Tsarnaev’s brother, Tamerian, was killed in the incident. Both men were considered by Russian authorities to be radical Muslim extremists, although the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had cleared them in investigations prior to the Boston Marathon bombing. Tsarnaev faces multiple charges in the event that killed three people and left 264 people injured as a pressure cooker full of shrapnel exploded as participants crossed the finish line.

The jury in the Boston Marathon bombing trial is also looking at pieces of the explosives and hearing how the devices were put together. The homemade devices included gunpowder obtained from commercial use fireworks, according to the evidence. Other evidence presented in the trial describes the brothers’ apartment where police described it more like a construction site than a residence.

For Laslo, Bauman and Cocoran, the trial is not disrupting their efforts to live their lives. Laslo said she is looking forward to the race, if she can prepare herself to finish it. Laslo admits she was not a runner and had a difficult time her first week in training, but is now running 14 miles. She and all those affected are set for the Boston Marathon bombing, and all of its destruction, to pull victims together to build the city up and stronger.

By Melody Dareing


Christian Science Monitor

Greeley Tribune

Lowell Sun

Photo by Katherine Hala – Flickr license

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