Boston marks five years since marathon attack with tributes

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April 16, 2018
The father of Lingzi Lu, Jun Lu, foreground left, and her aunt Helen Zhao, foreground right, carry a wreath ahead of the family of Martin Richard, background from left, Henry, Bill, Denise and Jane, partially hidden, during a ceremony at the site where Martin Richard and Lingzi Lu were killed in the second explosion at the 2013 Boston Marathon, Sunday, April 15, 2018, in Boston. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

It was a day filled with service and commemorations in honour of victims and survivors of the deadly Boston Marathon bombings five years ago.

Boston began the fifth anniversary of the attacks yesterday with Mayor Marty Walsh and Governor Charlie Baker laying wreaths early in the morning at the spots along downtown Boylston Street where two bombs killed three spectators and maimed more than 260 others on April 15, 2013.

Both addressed families and survivors at a private ceremony inside the Boston Public Library.

"On April 15, 2013, our city changed forever, but over the last five years, we have reclaimed hope. We have reclaimed the finish line, and Boston has emerged with a new strength, a resilience rooted in love," Walsh said.

Jane and Henry Richard, siblings of the youngest victim Martin Richard, and members of the family's foundation, also spoke.

CHOOSE KINDNESS

Henry Richard urged those listening to follow Martin's message to "choose kindness and do more". The family's foundation was founded in 2014 to connect young people with opportunities for volunteerism and community engagement.

Victim Lu Lingzi's uncle, Sherman Yee, was present at the ceremony and private gathering. He said: "The family has been overwhelmed by love and support from all over the world." He called Lingzi an "extraordinary girl" who represented the youth that come to the US from China to study.

"While she didn't realise her dreams, as her family we invest in the youth through our foundation to keep her memory going," he said.

The bombs also killed 29-year-old Krystle Campbell of Arlington. Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer Sean Collier was killed in the line of duty during a confrontation with bomber Tamerlan Tzarneav.

Roxanne Simmonds was at commemorative ceremonies to honour her son, fallen Boston police officer Dennis Simmonds. Simmonds suffered a head injury on April 19, 2013, during a shoot-out with Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev as law enforcement closed in on them.

He suffered a fatal brain aneurysm a year later, assessed to be the result of his injuries from the explosive device. Roxanne Simmonds said 'DJ' was "brilliant and fearless he just loved Boston".