Most of the focus of the current week leading up to Patriot’s Day has been on the events surrounding last year’s Boston Marathon bombing, as it should be.
But for those of us in Watertown, what many remember best are the startling events that began to unfold just three days later as Stellina’s hometown suddenly became the focus of a manhunt that has few precedents in history.
During the late evening hours of April 18, 2013 the Stellina staff followed the police emergency the same way everyone else in America did, on television or online. Access into Watertown was impossible and the restaurant was closed.
But a few of our staff are natives to the area and actually lived through the tension-filled nightmare. And one of them was in the thick of it from the beginning.
Carlos Urizar, sous-chef, and his wife Lori have been part of our restaurant family for almost 20 years. They live in east Watertown with their two young daughters Mariana and Isabel. Little did they know that they would find themselves at Ground Zero when the search for the Marathon bombers reached its peak.
Throughout the evening and into the morning Carlos kept others from Stellina abreast of the latest news with text messages and cellphone photos of the military presence in his neighborhood. From his apartment windows he monitored the changing scenario as the day wore on. (By the way, the attached photos are courtesy of Carlos)
Just when it seemed that it would end on a disappointing note with the bomber still at large, came a hot text from Carlos: “Shots fired” “Victim down” “Five hundred yards from my house!” “Police converging on scene!”
And then it was over. But neither Watertown, Carlos and Lori or Stellina will ever forget the events of April 19, 2013. And we salute, as we have countless times, the many responders and officials on patrol that day. In particular our own Watertown Police and Fire Departments.
Watertown (Still) Strong!