Patriots' Day in Boston Massachusetts is a civic holiday. This means that locals are not at work but out and about enjoying events. Events such as the Boston Marathon which was hit by two bombs Monday.
April 15 s a notable day in history for terrible events and now Patriots' Day 2013 will join other events in infamy. Wikipedia reports "Since 1969, the holiday has been observed on the third Monday in April, providing a three-day long weekend, as well as being the first day of public school vacation week in Maine and Massachusetts".
At time of writing, Tuesday, information is still coming in and the perpetrators of this attack are not known. There are reports that "Law enforcement sources said the 20-year-old Saudi Arabian suspect was under guard at an undisclosed Boston hospital" but we cannot confirm this yet.
Patriots' Day commemorates the anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775. Old history then but important to many Americans. It would be foolish to speculate too much about the terrorists that launched the attack but it is fair to say they could be Americans or foreign agitators. Whoever attacked though are terrorists as that is what they did, invoke terror.
The death toll is now three and one is believed to be an eight-year-old boy. Yes the Boston Marathon was a family event and included children. In the immediate aftermath of the bombings a lock down took place around the White House Washington and in the Boston area. A no fly zone over the marathon event was put in place. Cell phone communication was stopped preventing loved ones getting in touch with those at the scene or at home. This however was vital as bombs can be, and are, triggered by cell phone calls.
Patriot Day will now always carry the scar of 2013. It will be an emotional day in the future. It will however need to be kept as a day of celebration, or else the terrorists win.
Sky News reports that there are fears for Britons taking part in the event. "Some 347 of the 25,000 runners taking part in the race were British and several have spoken of the aftermath of the twin blasts". Runners from a variety of countries as well as home grown runners from the USA were taking place.
Boston Marathon runner Darren Foy, 40, from Southampton, England, said "There are reports here that the explosions came from a hotel at the finish line and I walked past there a few days ago to pick up my race number. "It's such a soft target. There are hundreds of thousands spectators on the streets and 27,000 runners, so we got off lightly."
That may be but there are reports of terrible injuries at the scene including one person with legs blown off below the knee and another person with their feet gone. Around 140 people were injured and around 17 remain in a critical condition.
President Obama addressed the American nation saying "Any responsible individuals, any responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice."
The FBI has launched an investigation. Let's hope they locate the perpetrators.
Update Tuesday 16.30pm BST
Eight-year-old Martin Richard, who was killed in the Boston bombings, was waiting at the finish line off the race to give his marathon runner Dad a hug. There are reports that he was almost saved by running out to his Dad. However, at the last minute he ran back to his Mum and sister. Sky News reports his sister, Jane, has reportedly lost a leg and his mother, Denise, is understood to have undergone surgery for a serious head injury.A brother is believed to be unharmed.
Reports of a third bomb at the JFK library appear to have vanished. There are reports that the library suffered a mechanical fire that was unrelated to events five miles away in Boston.
Police and the FBI are carefully examining the scene for clues as to who planted the bombs and why? The latest news is that no person is under arrest and only two bombs were planted. The situation remains fluid.
Officials have however said that they believe there are no other attacks imminent.