Mass. Lawmaker Wants National Holiday for First Responders

Rep. Capuano will introduce the legislation two months after the Boston marathon bombings.

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A man is loaded into an ambulance after he was injured by one of two bombs that exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon near Copley Square on April 15, 2013, in Boston, Mass.
A man is loaded into an ambulance after he was injured by one of two bombs that exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon near Copley Square on April 15, 2013, in Boston, Mass.

Two months after the bombings at the Boston marathon, a congressman from Massachusetts wants better recognition for the first responders who put themselves in harm's way.

Rep. Michael Capuano, D-Mass., whose district includes a section of Boston, is planning to introduce legislation for a national holiday devoted to first responders. Capuano drafted the legislation after learning of an online petition by Andrew Collier, whose older brother, Sean, was allegedly shot and killed by the Boston bombers.

Sean Collier was killed in April while on duty as a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer.

[READ: Patriot Act Author Sensenbrenner: Data Mining Led to Missed Signals in Boston Bombing]

"My family and I are so proud of Sean's commitment to serve and protect. I know many families that share this same pride for their loved ones who have dedicated themselves to a life in the emergency response field," Collier writes in a Change.org petition with more than 2,000 signatures as of Wednesday afternoon – many from people who knew a first responder who was killed in the line of duty. "We ask Congress to recognize this service and selflessness by designating a National First Responders Day," Collier writes.

After the Boston bombing, Capuano released a statement thanking "the helpers," including first responders, law enforcement, nurses and doctors for their "courage and commitment to helping others in the face of overwhelming danger." A spokeswoman for Capuano says their office wants to help the Collier family "any way we can."

 

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