After Hurricane Sandy struck the Northeast on Monday, it seemed like the entire city of Boston closed down. But Tuesday morning told a different story: Despite the damage of the day before, the Public Garden, Boston Common, and Commonwealth Ave Mall were well under way to resuming their pre-storm appearances. We are very grateful that Boston’s Parks & Recreation Department began the clean up of Boston’s parks so early in the day, before the normal routine was in full swing again.
The Park’s Department employees were one group among many to work in dangerous conditions before and after the storm. Many brave men and women were working around the clock to ensure the safety of others during this and other disastrous events. In fact, one of our favorite memorials in the Commonwealth Avenue Mall is one dedicated to first-responding firefighters. The Vendome Memorial commemorates a devastating day in June of 1972 where the Vendome Hotel on Commonwealth Avenue caught fire. During the time that firefighters were extinguishing the fire, the southeast corner of the building suddenly collapsed, killing 9 firefighters.
The Vendome Memorial was dedicated on June 17, 1997– exactly 25 years after the terrible incident. Its purpose is to remind us of the courage and selflessness that our first responders have. It is a fitting tribute to the men and women who risk their lives to protect others- it shouldn’t take a storm like Sandy to remind us that these selfless people are out there watching over us, the monument is there all year to honor their committment. Thank you first responders for taking care of us all!