A strong message of resilience echoed through Boston, one year after two bombs exploded at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
The attack killed three people and injured 264 others.
Despite the horrific memories and somber tributes, the resounding message was loud and clear -“Boston remains Strong.”
“America will never, ever, ever stand down,” said US Vice president Joe Biden.
In honour of the victims, some 2,500 people packed the convention centre at a midday memorial programme.
“I know that no memorial, no words, no acts can fully provide the solace that your hearts and soul still yearn to acquire,” Mr Biden said.
“I hope it eases your grief a little bit.”
Biden also sent a heart-felt message to the survivors: “You’ve become the face of America’s resolve. For the whole world to see.”
Some of these faces took to the stage, offering their condolences, memories and personal wisdom:
“We will always remember our guardian angels,” one survivor said
“I think of the lessons we have learned, and have had to re-learn, that no milestone is too small to celebrate. Even walking into a non-handicapped bathroom stall for the first time doing a happy dance,” said survivor Adrianne Haslet-Davis.
Like dancer Adrianne Haslet-Davis, who lost a leg, hundreds were physically and emotionally hurt by the April 15th 2013 attacks.
While chaos broke out at the scene, firefighters, first responders and ordinary citizens jumped in to help the wounded.
Selfless acts, in the worst mass-casualty attack on Us. soil since 9-11.
But with the now-famous slogan – “Boston Strong” – the city will host the race again on April 21st under heightened security.