, Salem, MA


April 23, 2013

Boston, thanks for singing anthem, loud and proud

We all react to tragedy differently. As life would have it for me this week, I’ve been very busy, especially at night. That means while obviously aware of the bombings in Boston on Monday afternoon, I have not watched much of the television news coverage except for the first two or three hours after the attack.

In fact, about the only thing I have seen or read since, was finding out last Monday night about the 8-year-old boy who was killed. I couldn’t watch anymore after that. It was too sad, too upsetting and too unreasonable to digest without crying. So I shut down, turned everything off and went about working and being there for my family. But I knew that at some point, I was going to have to let it out.

That is where sports came through, as it so often does.

I am boycotting the NHL this year. So I wasn’t watching when around 8 p.m. Wednesday my phone began buzzing from friends everywhere having sent me a link to the Bruins-Sabres game. I figured it was a big hit or someone who fell and was made to look foolish. By now, many of you know of what I then clicked on and saw.

Bruins fans. Bostonians. Americans. Singing the national anthem. As loud and as proud as any group has ever sung it.

I’ve been crying ever since. Not constantly, but it doesn’t take much to get me choked up and glassy-eyed this week.

But thanks to those classy, inspiring citizens, it’s not a cry that is always dripping in sadness. That is what it would have been if not for that glorious moment inside TD Garden on Wednesday night. Yes, some of my tears are for the dead and wounded. Some of the tears are for the innocence of Patriots Day that was lost on Monday. But now some of my tears could be to celebrate that which brings us together — that which we feed off to get by in the 21st century.

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