I'm left feeling helpless hearing about the two explosions near the finish line of the Boston marathon hours ago. Grateful the toll is not worse, I've always known that each life and livelihood impacts countless others.
UPDATE (4/16/13, 10:00 A.M. Eastern): I've only visited Boston twice, both too brief, but as a fan of many Boston writers I have a vivid mental picture. I can imagine Robert B. Parker's Spenser and Jeremiah Healy's John Francis Cuddy running the marathon, and imagine their horror in the aftermath of yesterday. Yes, they are fictional characters but, longstanding and well loved, their reaction can help readers come to terms.
UPDATE (4/20/13, 6:30 A.M. Eastern): Remarkably, within days of the bombing, Massachusetts police, and federal agencies have achieved a measure of closure. As planned as the bombing was, the brothers behind it had no great escape plan after being identified by one of the victims. Best of all, one brother was apprehended alive and will be made to answer for the bombing, though no answers will satisfy the victims, including a murdered MIT police officer and a seriously-injured transit police officer.