A few days after a pair of bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon and captured the world’s attention, Tony Smith noticed several lit candles outside a yard in his Dorchester neighborhood and thought someone had placed them there in tribute to the victims.
But when he inquired about the candles, a neighbor repeated a line that is all too familiar in troubled pockets of the city.
“Someone was just shot there,’’ Smith recounted recently.
Since the Marathon attack on April 15, gunfire has not ceased in Boston’s urban community, where residents are at once sympathetic to the victims but conflicted about law enforcement’s sweeping response and the groundswell of support for the suffering.
Minority residents were deeply affected by the bombings. They, too, were in the race, at the finish line, and witnessed the maiming of victims. Some sought counseling to cope with the horror they saw. Some of their children attended school with the young Dorchester victim Martin Richard. And others returned to their churches and community centers to hold vigils and raise funds for those left to mend the wounds of terror.
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