The usual urban hustle and bustle of Meridian Street came to halt Monday afternoon in front of the District 7 Police Station to observe the 2:50 p.m. moment of silence for the victims of last week’s Boston Marathon bombing and slain MIT Officer Sean Collier as he pursued the two suspects Thursday night in Cambridge.
At 2:30 p.m. officers from District 7 began filing out of the station and took their position on the street. The American Flag outside the station was lowered to half-mast and the usual foot traffic that passes the station daily began to slow and turn into pockets of spectators.
Soon, the entire street was filled with residents and a solemn hush blanketed the habitually noisy street.
Five-minutes before the moment of silence was to be observed, traffic on the street was temporarily rerouted.
A lieutenant stepped forward and called the men in blue to attention. The only sound heard on the street was the voice of a dispatcher over the police radio counting down the minutes to the moment of silence.
With the one-minute warning the lieutenant shouted another command and all the officers crossed their hands in front of their bodies and slowly bowed their heads.
At 2:50 the moment of silence begun and you could hear a pin drop on Meridian Street during the 60-second observation.
Dozens had tears streaming down their face as they stood with friends, neighbors and children.
After the minute was up and the moment of silence over, the lieutenant gave another command and with great precision and timing every officer stood at attention and saluted.
After this District Captain Kelley McCormick gave the command and the officers were dismissed but not before a haunting chill was sent up everyone’s spine that witnessed the emotional tribute.
“We want to show everyone in East Boston that we are here for them,” said McCormick.
Monday marked the end of a crazy week for the men and woman of District 7, many who whom took part in the police operations following last week’s attack.
Days of double shifts and security details culminated in the chaos that broke out last Thursday in Watertown.
District 7 officers were called into Watertown to help assist during the door-to-door search missions.
One District 7 officer said each man in uniform had great spikes of adrenaline followed by lows of exhaustion.
Then on Friday night, as officers from the station were preparing to head home the radios lit up with a broadcast that the suspect was cornered on Franklin Street in Watertown.
District 7 officers along with State Police, Watertown Police and the FBI rushed back to be part of the takedown operation.
In the end the suspect was captured and as the officers and their brothers from across the area filed out, the streets were lined with cheering residents.
“It was a great feeling,” said one officer.