BOSTON (CBS/AP) – The memories of both September 11 and April 15 came together at the Massachusetts Statehouse with the award for civilian bravery to Carlos Arredondo whose indelible image captured the horror of the marathon bombings, seen helping bombing victim Jeff Bauman who lost both his legs but survived.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Karen Twomey reports
The ceremony marked the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks as Arredondo accepted the award name for Madeline Amy Sweeney, a flight attendant on American Airlines flight 11, one of two planes hijacked out of Logan Airport.
Arredondo says, like Sweeney, he was doing his job.
“On April 15th I did my duty as a human being, reaching out to love and aid strangers,” said Arredondo.
Bauman was on hand for the award but declined to speak with reporters.
“Carlos moved quickly, as quickly as he could still holding what remained of the young man’s legs,” said Major General Scott Rice of the Massachusetts National Guard as he introduced Arredondo.
“I’m just so glad he’s (Jeff Bauman) doing well, moving on with his life and getting healthy every day,” said Arredondo.
The pain of survivors was also profoundly felt as Bill Richard delivered a brief message for the first time about his family’s loss of eight-year-old Martin, the youngest of the bombing victims.
Reading from the poem “Comfort in Words” he said, ”Those who have changed our lives in some small profound way are closer than we know because it’s their light that shines on our world.”
Ironically, on September 11, 2001 Arredondo was working construction in Boston and says he wanted to drive a pickup truck to New York City to help with the search for victims. His wife refused to let him go, but says that impulse is honored with the Sweeney award today.
“Carlos has a way of running toward danger, in this case (the marathon bombings) it was a very positive thing. Being able to help Jeff live is basically something wonderful,” said Melida Arredondo.
Arredondo is now part of the healing for both anniversaries. “Being here is a tremendous responsibility to continue doing good in the community.”
9/11 Events in Boston:
6 p.m: Massachusetts Fallen Firefighters Memorial’s sixth annual ceremony. Ashburton Park, State House, Ashburton and Bowdoin streets.
7 p.m: Parkman Bandstand on Boston Common for the 12th annual Sept. 11 vigil.
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