Boston, Massachusetts – For the first time since the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, the marathon will fall on the bombings’ anniversary. In its honor, we have compiled a few of the notable charitable activities that have been conducted in commemoration of the victims and survivors of the terrorist attack.
First off, The Heather Abbott Foundation was founded by its namesake to provide customized prostheses for people who have experienced the loss of their limbs through traumatic circumstances. The foundation encourages donors to make contributions through fundraisers and corporate sponsorships, among other methods.
Heather Abbott was herself a survivor of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, and she lost a leg due to the attack. Instead of wallowing in self-pity, she channeled her energies into building a foundation dedicated to providing amputees with personalized prostheses that aren’t covered by health insurance.
According to the foundation, prostheses that aren’t considered as basic walking devices aren’t typically covered by health insurance plans. The Heather Abbott Foundation fills in the gap, and it has raised an estimated $1 million since its founding in 2014. The foundation’s donations mainly comes from the annual marathon weekend fundraiser.
According to the foundation, it has provided assistance to nearly 30 people in 11 states across the country. The recipients come from many walks of life, from a 5-year old child to a 58-year old adult.
The Medford High School softball team continues to honor one of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings’ victims, Krystle Campbell. The softball team has hosted the two-day Krystle Campbell Softball Tournament for six consecutive years.
The competition honors Krystle Campbell, a former softball player and a 2001 graduate of Medford High School, who died as a result of her injuries sustained during the attack. She was 29 at the time.
The event has expanded every year, as well as raised over $50,000 in scholarship funds in Campbell’s name. According to Terri Eisnor, the scholarship isn’t exactly for students who are into sports, particularly softball. Instead, it’s for children who are active in their communities and who give back to their communities, just as Campbell was known for.
Jack Dempsey, the high school’s head coach, remembers his feelings when he and his players heard about what happened. He recalled that it was a total shock, and he remembered saying that they should do something. The next day, he and his players decided to have Medford Strong shirts made and put on an event.
And thus the Krystle Campbell Softball Tournament was born.
The high school football team wants to keep Campbell’s memory alive through the years. According to Brenna Forbes, a senior at the high school, everything at the event resembles Campbell so much and it makes for a positive environment.
Aside from the two-day competition, the Medford High School softball team will also be holding a fundraiser at John Brewer’s Tavern in Malden on Wednesday. Participants have the opportunity to take pictures with four Red Sox World Series trophies in exchange for a minimal donation.
Matt Brown and Lucas Carr, a wheelchair team, has moved their marathon Monday tradition to Sunday, or the eve of the 2019 Boston Marathon, due to unfavorable weather conditions. The duo were escorted by the Massachusetts State Police across the 26.2-mile route.
Brown was injured during a freak accident at a hockey game in 2010 when he was still playing for Norwood. In 2012, Carr teamed up with Brown in completing the marathon and in raising awareness for spinal cord injuries.
In 2019, the duo ran the marathon’s course to raise money for the Massachusetts Fallen Heroes, a foundation dedicated to providing programs and services to members of its Veteran and Gold Star Family community. They also dedicated their run to their fallen friend, Eric Emond, who died overseas in the line of duty.
The City of Boston also has a memorial to the victims of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings although it’s still under construction. Last March 2019, Pablo Eduardo, the artist behind its creation, has invited the media into his Chelsea studio for a preview of the memorial. The tribute would be located in Boylston Street and expected to be unveiled in 2020.
According to Eduardo, the design process has not only been long but also highly emotional. He also said that while the memorial has taken longer than expected, it’s essential to get it right. He asserted that it’s important to respect the time necessary for the victims and their families to process these things.
The project has cost the City of Boston approximately $2 million so far and it has taken three years. The memorials will be placed at the mark where the two bombs went off near the finish line. The attack killed three people and injured more than 260 people.
The memorials are made of bronze, granite and glass. The granite and bronze represents strength in times of adversity while the glass symbolizes fragility. The intertwined granite pills also represent the victims and the bronze-plated bricks symbolize the police officers who were killed during the manhunt for the bombers. There will also be 18-foot glass light poles.