Last week was undeniably a difficult week for Boston. On Monday, we had the Marathon Bombings, which killed three people and injured well over 100. Then, as the week came to a close, officer Sean Collier was slain by one of the Marathon Bombing suspects. One of the two suspects was later killed by the authorities pursuing him. And most people remained glued to their televisions, computers, etc. all day Friday as the city was essentially shut down while the remaining bombing suspect was hunted down, and finally captured in Watertown.
It was a tough week, to say the least. But it was also a week that made me proud of Boston. People came together to support and help one another in any way they could. People gave blood, volunteered, and overall showed how good they can be. The Wednesday night MIT swing dance was a welcome reprieve for many (I know it was for me), and a great way to deal with the stress of the goings-on of Monday. After seeing so much sadness, doing something as joyful as swing dancing with friends was a great catharsis. I had been wondering if the dance would be cancelled due to the Marathon Bombings, but it was just as crowded as ever, which was wonderful to see.
Of course, Friday brought with it news of more tragic events, and a day of lockdown while the remaining Marathon Bombing suspect was captured. This of course impacted the normal Friday night swing dance at Boston Swing Central. They told the band from NYC to stay home, as it was still too dangerous around 4pm, when they would have had to depart to make it to Boston in time. But once the suspect was apprehended, a late-night DJ’d dance took place, which I was very happy about. Though there weren’t as many people in attendance as usual, it was still fun. And all the proceeds went to charity to help the victimes of the Boston Marathon Bombings, which I think was a great way for BSC to help Boston in the road to recovery.
It was at Boston Swing Central that I learned that the MIT security officer who’d been killed, Sean Collier, was a member of our swing dance community. He’d started coming to the weekly MIT swing dances recently, and had also started taking swing dance lessons. Though I did not know him personally, I was deeply saddened to learn that one of the victims of the week’s tragedies had been one of our own. To honor him, everyone danced a “steal jam”, which is a special kind of jam dance. I thought it was a very nice gesture, and a good way to celebrate the memory of someone.And I thought it was appropriate to dedicate an entry of my little blog to a fallen member of our Boston swing community.