Acting Mayor Kim Janey is urging residents to spread kindness Thursday as the city marks its annual One Boston Day observances to honor those killed in the Boston Marathon bombings, as well as the resilience demonstrated in the aftermath of the tragedy that consumed the city on April 15, 2013.
Janey issued the call Wednesday in a statement and video message.
“April 15 is One Boston Day,” she says in the clip. “This annual tradition was started to commemorate the tragic events surrounding the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013. This day serves as an opportunity to celebrate the resiliency, generosity, and the strength demonstrated by the people of Boston and those around the world.”
The clip goes on, with a nod to the devastating toll of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Over the past year, we have all been tested in ways we could not have imagined,” Janey says. “The spirit of One Boston Day is more important than ever, as we continue to battle a public health crisis. Our hearts are heavy with the collective grief for the lives lost during the pandemic. And we are inspired by the resiliency, generosity, and strength of our essential workers.”
Janey concludes with a stirring appeal for unity among all city residents, while also stressing the need to abide by COVID-19 safety protocols of physical distancing and avoiding big crowds.
“This year, One Boston Day, we’re asking you to stand together by staying apart,” Janey said. “Make this your day of reflection and service. There are many powerful ways to safely participate in One Boston Day. Download the checklist for ideas, and then find a way to do your part.”
She said Bostonians can share their acts of kindness online using the hashtag #OneBostonDay.
“Help honor Boston’s resilience, generosity, and strength,” Janey says. “Let’s show the power of One Boston Day as we reflect and serve together.”
The website for One Boston Day suggests residents thank medical professionals and first responders in their lives, thank a veteran for their service with a card, or support a local small business by purchasing a gift card or shopping online.
Janey plans to visit two fire stations and a memorial to the victims and to hold a moment of silence at the Marathon finish line, according to her office. She is scheduled to visit with firefighters at the Engine 7 station at 11 a.m. and at 11:35 a.m. at Engine 33 to recognize their role in the bombing response, her office said in a statement.
Janey intends to visit the Boston marathon Memorial at 12:10 p.m. to pay tribute to the victims, and at 2:49 p.m., will host a moment of silence at the Congress Street flag poles near City Hall.
She also asked local faith leaders to ring bells to honor the victims, spokesman Nick Martin said in a brief phone interview.
The bombings near the finish line eight years ago wounded hundreds of people and claimed the lives of three victims: Krystle Marie Campbell, 29, who grew up in Medford and was a well-known restaurant and event caterer; Lingzi Lu, a 23-year-old Boston University graduate student from China; and Martin Richard, an 8-year-old Dorchester boy whose family made the Marathon an annual family outing.
Correspondent Andrew Stanton contributed to this story.