Elected Officials React to Boston Marathon Explosions

Reaction to Monday’s explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon continues to come in from elected officials. Springfield Congressman Richard Neal was just about to pass through security at Bradley International Airport, on his way back to Washington when he found out about the incident from a staffer. Neal says increased awareness by citizens to suspicious activity is an important step to preventing another similar situation. He says he has faith in federal authorities when it comes to solving the crime.

“I think reminding people that they need to be vigilant is very important. And I think that you can also see the great job the first responders did and certainly concentrating the F.B.I and the A.T.F there, which are arms of the Federal Government in the next few days along with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, all of these, I think are very important. Once the Federal Government sets out in this sort of an investigation and they put their hooks into you, you’re going to feel it.”

Neal was heavily involved in the peace process in Northern Ireland, which included many terrorist attacks. He says yesterday’s explosions in Boston were different in nature.

“I don’t remember ever, innocence being targeted. Both sides saw it as the status of enemy combatants and they saw it as warfare. That’s very different, I think, target, than these innocent bystanders who brought their children to see the conclusions of this magnificent event.”

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno issued a statement extending sympathies to those impacted by the attack. He says in the moments following the incident he and Police Commissioner William Fitchet reached out to Boston and state officials to offer resources.