Lincoln County News | Newcastle, ME
Wednesday, May 25, 2016 Serving Maine and Lincoln County for over a century. Volume 141 Issue 21


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4/24/2013 2:00:00 PM
Commentary - A glimpse of Boston on the mend
Thousands of spectators joined in for the singing of the National Anthem during the opening ceremonies of the Red Sox game on April 20. (D. Lobkowicz photo)
Thousands of spectators joined in for the singing of the National Anthem during the opening ceremonies of the Red Sox game on April 20. (D. Lobkowicz photo)
By Dominik Lobkowicz

When my in-laws gave Red Sox tickets to my wife and me at Christmas, we were thankful for and appreciative of their gift. At the time, we did not realize what opportunity the tickets, dated April 20, would represent.

We had planned our trip to Quincy, Mass., well-before we headed south on April 19 amidst news reports of a manhunt in the Watertown area; indeed, well-before two bombs exploded at the Boston Marathon finish line on April 15.

Several family members made sure to get a hold of us before we hit the road on Friday and confirm we knew we were headed near or perhaps into a lock down, but despite the threat of complications we set out.

Our trip down Interstate 95 was nondescript, except for hitting on the continuous reports of the search for Dzhokar Tsarnaev of the news media as we scanned for music on the radio. Even skirting Watertown by a few miles to the west during the lock down was smooth sailing.

The first hint of a change in the city was when we got off the T at Kenmore Station just a few blocks from Fenway Park on Saturday. Coming up the steps inside the station we passed eight military police and six Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority officers, all armed and uniformed. Similarly, emerging onto the street there was another eight or so Boston police officers with motorcycles, more MPs, and military vehicles.

It was comforting there was such heavy security presence keeping an eye on things as we crammed shoulder to shoulder like sardines into Yawkey Way to get our tickets checked and bags searched. Everyone acted as if there hadn't been a deadly bombing amongst crowds of people at a major sporting event less than two miles away earlier that week.

I couldn't speak for the thousands of people there, but based on how they were acting, it would seem they must have been comforted, too.

Shortly after we got in, Gov. Deval Patrick, Mayor Thomas Menino, FBI special agent in charge Richard DesLauriers, victims of the bombings and others involved with the hunt for the Tsarnaev brothers came out onto the field for the pre-game ceremony.

The special guests were well-received by the crowd, but what gave me shivers was when a gigantic American flag was unfurled over the Green Monster and thousands and thousands joined in singing the National Anthem.

There was an electricity in the air during that song. It felt less like the start of a baseball game, and more like the start of healing and a return to normalcy was already beginning.

The Sox went on to beat the Kansas City Royals 4 to 3 in an exciting eight and a half innings. The usual boos were there when somebody fouled up - definitely when the Royals' Lorenzo Cain hit a home run off of closer Andrew Bailey in the ninth - but the support for the Sox was definitely there when they were playing as they should.

Neil Diamond may have summed up the energy of the stadium and the city's attitude going forward best during his surprise performance of "Sweet Caroline" before the bottom of the eighth: "Good times never seemed so good."

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