As I was standing in front of Boston’s Moakley
Federal Courthouse, a large parking lot separating
me from the entrance, I noticed a long line of
uniformed police officers positioned on a small traffic
island across from court.
Another reporter asked, “What’s going on there?”
I thought with reputed Mafia boss “Whitey” Bulger
and accused Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev
in court on the same day, perhaps this was an extra
measure of security.
I wandered up to the front of the courthouse,
snapped a picture of the police officers, and took a
closer look. And then it dawned on me: these were
MIT and Somerville Police officers, colleagues of MIT
Officer Sean Collier.
The Tsarnaev brothers are accused of murdering
Collier to steal his gun the night they got in a
shootout with police.
It was a silent, yet powerful, display of support for a
fallen friend and colleague, and another reminder of
how the Boston Marathon Bombing and its aftermath
cut to the bone so many people in my hometown.
It’s obviously hard to find any silver lining to the
tragedy that happened last April, but as an optimist,
it’s something I’ve tried to discover.
I witnessed first-hand the way the bombing brought
people in Boston together. Who can forget the fans
at Boston Garden singing the National Anthem as
one voice after Rene Rancourt stopped singing after
the first line? Chills. Or Red Sox slugger David
Ortiz proclaiming, “This is our f&%#ing city!” to the
Fenway Park crowd?
My time in Boston this year has reacquainted me
with a place that’s dear to me, but hadn’t spent
much time in over the past 20 years.
I fell in love with Boston all over again almost the
way a tourist would, staying in hotels and eating
in restaurants in the Seaport, Back Bay, and near
I’ve gotten to spend time with NBC pros like Jay
Gray, JoEllen Ruvoli, Mike Kaufman, and Alycia
I’m extremely proud of our coverage of this
important story and eager to continue following the
quest for justice for its victims.