On April 19, 1995, Timothy McVeigh set off a truck bomb that destroyed the Murra Federal Building in Oklahoma City. The truck was parked at the loading dock, directly under the day care center. My daughter, three years old at the time, was in the day care center on the first floor of the Kennedy Federal Building in Boston. It is next to the loading dock. My wife was working on the 19th floor. When I returned to work the next day, someone in the elevator joked that it was too bad the bomb hadn’t taken out the IRS. The ride was short, and I was able to stay still.

The day after Christmas 2000 was relatively warm and pleasant. The kids kept going in and out of the house, and we heard helicopters. That’s not unusual, since there is a National Guard camp at the other end of town. These helicopters, though, did not sound like they were moving. I walked down the street to see what was going on, and found Albion Street blocked off by police. There were news and State Police helicopters hovering over the area around North Avenue and Foundry Street. No one could tell me what was happening. I went back home to see if there was anything on the news about it. There was. It turns out I had even seen the murderer driving around the neighborhood several times. He had a sort of squared-off blue Plymouth sedan, with vanity plates that said “MUCKO.”

So after what happened in Virginia, the sound of a helicopter hovering today brought it all back to mind. It was just a traffic copter at the cloverleaf, but I needed to check.

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