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Boston Marathon bombing: Oklahoma City sends prayers on 18th anniversary of bombing

On the 18th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, when a truck bomb was detonated outside a federal building, family members of the 168 killed sent prayers to Boston.

Oklahoma City Boston bombingsEnlarge
Justin Flagg, 7, gets a hug from his father, Lee (R), as he sits on the trunk of an Oklahoma trooper police car on May 2, 1995 at the site of the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah federal building in downtown Oklahoma City. The Flagg family came to Oklahoma City to bring 4000 teddy bears they collected as a gesture of solidarity with survivors and people affected by the car-bomb explosion. (ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP/Getty Images)

On the 18th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, when a truck bomb was detonated outside a federal building, family members of the 168 killed sent prayers to Boston.

A church near the former site of the bombed building in Oklahoma City was filled with 800 people Friday as they gathered to remember those who were killed and those who survived the attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building on April 19, 1995.

"It opens that wound," Dawn DeArmon, whose mother, Federal Employees Credit Union employee Kathy Leinen, was killed 18 years ago, said of the Boston bombing.

The remembrance ceremony is usually held outside on the memorial grounds, but because of cold temperatures and damp grounds, it was moved inside the First United Methodist Church. At 9:02 a.m., the ceremony included 168 seconds of silence to honor the lives that were lost.

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Gary Pierson, Chairman of the Oklahoma City National Foundation said, "It all started as a peaceful day 18 years ago, but at 9:01 a.m. everything changed," said Gary Pierson, Chairman of the Oklahoma City National Foundation.

Congressman James Lankford also spoke at the ceremony, and said the Boston Marathon bombing made 18 years of grieving and healing all come rushing back.

"All the raw emotion comes back again," Lankford said. "And we realize it's still extremely tender to us."

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, who was Lieutenant Governor 18 years ago, shared her memories of that fateful day.

"This tragedy, it could've crippled our city, but it didn't," Fallin said, before reaching out to those in Boston. 

"Our hearts break for our fellow Americans. We grieve for those who have been killed."

London Marathon runners have also reached out to Boston, saying they will run in solidarity with their fellow athletes. They will each pin a black ribbon to their running vests next to their race numbers in remembrance of those who were killed and injured in the bombing at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

"I am running the marathon in honor of my dad who passed away three years ago and was really into his sport," said Kim Butigan, a 24-year-old journalist from Dubrovnik in Croatia. "I was shaken [after what happened in Boston] and apprehensive about running, but we must not let these things affect our everyday lives."

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/130419/boston-marathon-bombing-oklahoma-city-sends-prayers-18th-anniversary