A week after the Boston Marathon, the Dorchester community gathered at a tall public clock in Peabody Square to support friends and neighbors grievously affected by the bombing attack near the finish line: the Richard family.
The vintage tower clock in the Boston neighborhood had been stopped for several days at 2:50 p.m. to mark the moment on April 15 that an explosion on Boylston Street killed 8-year-old Martin Richard and severely wounded his mother, Denise Richard, and little sister, Jane.
Martin’s father and big brother, Bill and Henry Richard, escaped significant physical injury.
Last Monday afternoon, according to local news reports, the clock was restarted in a quiet public ceremony attended by scores of residents and public officials.
On Tuesday, private funeral and burial services were held for Martin.
“We laid our son Martin to rest, and he is now at peace,” Bill and Denise Richard said in a statement.
The couple added: “The outpouring of love and support over the last week has been tremendous. This has been the most difficult week of our lives and we appreciate that our friends and family have given us space to grieve and heal.”
There was no immediate information available on the medical condition of Denise and Jane Richard.
Jane Richard, 7, is a first-grader at the Neighborhood House Charter School, according to Bill Forry, managing editor of the Dorchester Reporter weekly newspaper, who knows the family. Martin was a third-grader at the school, Forry said, and Denise Richard is a librarian there.
Forry said the mother is a native of Dorchester and a civic leader. “A very eager, energetic person who’s always out on the streets,” he said. “She would walk the kids everywhere. Very invested in Dorchester as a citizen, as a mom.”
Friends who live near the Richard family told stories of singing Irish songs with them in their kitchen late into the night, of the entire family pitching in for every volunteer effort — decorating the float for the Dorchester Day Parade, helping at the neighborhood chili cook-off, and collecting trash in the annual Boston Shines cleanup project.
The family’s church, St. Ann Parish Neponset in Dorchester, was filled for an emotional service April 21, the Boston Globe reported.
“We also pray for immediate healing from Denise’s and Jane’s physical injuries,” the church said in a statement on its Web site. “We can only imagine the suffering that the Richard family carries today, as a result of the Boston Marathon tragedy, will be with them each day of their lives.”