Bill Richard, whose 8-year-old son Martin was killed in yesterday's Boston Marathon bombings, is a 1988 graduate of Salem High School, sources have confirmed.
Richard released a statement thanking family, friends and strangers for their support following his son's death. His wife, Denise, and the couple's 6-year-old daughter, Jane, also suffered significant injuries in the blasts.
"My dear son Martin has died from injuries sustained in the attack on Boston," Richard said. "My wife and daughter are both recovering from serious injuries. We thank our family and friends, those we know and those we have never met, for their thoughts and prayers. I ask that you continue to pray for my family as we remember Martin."
Friends remembered Martin as a happy boy who was often outside playing with his sister, older brother Henry and other neighborhood kids.
The Richard family was watching yesterday's race and had gone to get ice cream before returning to the area near the finish line before the blasts.
"They were looking in the crowd as the runners were coming to see if they could identify some of their friends when the bomb hit," said U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch, a friend of the family for 25 years.
He said they are a strong family and are doing better than expected, while rallying around the 6-year-old girl.
Lynch said the family was attempting to get over the race barriers and into the street when the second blast occurred, killing Martin. Bill Richard and Henry Richard were not seriously injured, but doctors did remove ball bearings from Bill Richard's leg, Lynch said.
For more on this story, see tomorrow's Salem News.