Forum, damaged in marathon bombings, reopens

Posted: 08/15/13 at 8:35 am EDT      Last Updated: 08/15/13 at 10:37 pm EDT

BOSTON (WHDH) -- A restaurant that has been closed since the second of two pressure cooker bombs went off near the finish line of the Boston Marathon reopened Thursday, exactly four months after the attack.

Mayor Menino attended the opening and reassured the people of Boston this demonstrates the strength and unity of the city and its residents.

“This restaurant is a symbol of the resilience and unity of our city,” said Menino.

The Forum is the site of the second bomb, which killed Lingzi Lu and Martin Richard. The April 15 bombings killed a total of three people and injured more than 260. Its reopening reflects strength and persistence for many.

“I remember seeing everyone jumping into action and doing everything that they could. This day certainly isn’t about tourniquets or anything else. It’s about reopening, everyone being here with us, us welcoming guests back into a beautiful new restaurant,” said Chris Loper, manager at The Forum restaurant.

The Forum is the site of the second bomb, which killed Lingzi Lu and Martin Richard. The April 15 bombings killed a total of three people and injured more than 260. Heather Abbott was also injured. She returned to the site, determined to make new memories.

“Shortly after I got catapulted into the restaurant, kind of coming to on the ground,” said Abbott. “It was a little bit of a strange feeling coming in for the first time. I’m here with the people I came with the first time and the people who rescued me and I’m looking forward to leaving with a much different memory.

Days after the bombings, investigators combed through every inch of the building searching for answers. When all other Boylston Street restaurants and shops reopened everyone waited to see when The Forum would do the same.

Loper said they didn’t just fix what the bomb destroyed; they renovated to make sure the restaurant was even better. Loper said it is another milestone for everyone -- the staff, the city -- to mark off in the recovery.

“Reopening four months to the day, it kind of shows the strength of Boston and that we’re finally back. The city is whole again once we reopen I feel,” said Loper.

The Forum reopened Thursday for a charity event and will be open to the public on Friday. It is the last of the Boylston Street businesses damaged in the explosions to reopen.

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