Saturday's Boston Red Sox victory parade to heal city's marathon wounds

CNN/ Newswire | 11/2/2013, 5:50 p.m.
Boston is a land of memory. After all, it's the capital of a commonwealth, not just a state, evoking the ...
**Embargo: Boston** Boston Red Sox fans react after the Red Sox wins the 2013 Championship in the World Series.

By Michael Martinez


Boston is a land of memory. After all, it's the capital of a commonwealth, not just a state, evoking the colonial era. And when it comes to baseball, well, how many times have we heard the yarn about how the antique Fenway Park endured nearly a century of pain without a World Series championship?

Now the Boston Red Sox have won their third title in nine years -- at Fenway, no less -- but this victory seems to hold deeper meaning than just winning a sporting crown.

It's being compared to a divine balm to heal one of the darkest recent memories in America: the terror bombings at the Boston Marathon last April.

On Saturday morning, a victory parade will make a symbolic gesture to confirm the restoration of a great city: the procession will cross over the marathon's finish line -- still marked on the street -- where the explosions occurred.

The parade will follow the same route used to celebrate the team's championship in 2004, when it broke the streak for not winning a World Series, the team said. The team's last championship was in 2007.

"It lifts the spirit back up after the marathon," one woman told CNN in Boston during a post-game street celebration this week so loud that it wasn't possible to get her name. "They obviously deserve it. I feel like I knew it was going to happen."

Many mused about the supernatural being at work.

"First the Boston Bombing and now the World Series...," said Michael David Reel on the Red Sox Facebook page, "it was given to you."

It was as if Boston rose again after a trial of the spirit.

"This was not just about winning a Championship. It was about a group of regular guys that believed in themselves and this city, and this country, and through their unbelievable efforts it helped relieve the pain of the Boston Marathon bombing in April," wrote Dave Hornoff on the same social media page. "They dedicated their season to the victims and the entire country embraced them, and they embraced Boston and the entire country. What we witnessed was a real life movie in the making and for me this was more than just sports. More championships will be won every year but the story of the 2013 Boston Red Sox will never be repeated."

Fans like Hornoff also repeated all or part of slogan that has since become a mantra in the marathon tragedy's aftermath: "Boston Strong 617."

The terror explosions disturbed the nation because they occurred in such a public place: the attacks killed three people, wounded more than 260 others, and put the city in a five-day lockdown until a manhunt finally captured the sole surviving terror suspect.

"This World Series was so much more than just a baseball game for the city of Boston," Derek Lemieux wrote on the team's Facebook page.

Then, signing off in a shorthand of the digital era, he wrote: "#BostonStrong."