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US awards $8.4m grant for groups helping Marathon bombing victims

The Department of Justice has awarded an $8.4 million grant for organizations who have helped the victims, witnesses, and first responders in April’s Boston Marathon bombings.

The grant, which will be distributed by the Massachusetts Office of Victim Assistance, “will provide critical support to many who were affected by last year’s terrorist attack,” Attorney General Eric Holder said in a statement.

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“We will never forget the courage of the first responders, marathon participants, and bystanders who rushed to save lives on that terrible day, nor the heartbreak and pain of those who suffered injuries or lost friends and loved ones. With this grant, we reaffirm the Justice Department’s firm commitment to standing with the victims of this heinous crime – and all of the community leaders and service providers who continue to heal this remarkable and resilient city,” Holder said.

“After the terrorist attack at last year’s Boston Marathon, many local organizations provided critical support to those affected by the tragedy, demonstrating the Commonwealth’s strength, spirit, and resilience,” US Senator Elizabeth Warren said in a joint statement with all of the members of the state’s congressional delegation. “I’m pleased and grateful that the DOJ has awarded this major federal grant to Massachusetts to support our agencies’ work, and to ensure that those affected by the attack have the resources they need as they continue to recover.”

Three people were killed and more than 260 were wounded in the two explosions on April 15 near the Marathon finish line. One bombing suspect, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was killed in a confrontation with police several days later, while his brother, Dzhokhar, is awaiting trial on federal charges that could bring him the death penalty. The brothers also are accused of fatally shooting MIT police officer Sean Collier.

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