In the middle of the night, Boston police and law enforcement agencies engaged in a massive firefight with the two suspects from the Boston Marathon bombings, Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed in the firefight that took place in Watertown, Massachussettes, which you can read more about here.
The explosions and gunfire have been well-documented, but a source from Boston tells us how the day has been for the student of Boston College, located just outside of Boston and only 4 miles from Watertown.
Here's what our source said:
I woke up around 4:30 to check and see what the shootout situation was like. I heard sirens everywhere outside my window. Heard nothing from the school yet. Went back to sleep and woke up at 7:30 with this text/email from Boston College emergency alert:
"BC Police Emergency. Due to public safety concerns, BC is closed and classes are cancelled until further notice. Remain indoors. Check www.bc.edu/bcinfo"
Then we got this:
"BC Police Emergency: All students and local residents are asked to shelter in place until further notice. Please remain indoors. www.bc.edu/bcinfo for updates."
Sirens all day, police everywhere, campus is absolutely deserted. Blackhawks keep flying over and they escort us to and from the dining halls for meals. BCPD has been monitoring campus traffic all day making sure people remain indoors, Dining Services set up a system to feed us, a few local businesses are open to get food to us. The police have been incredibly vigilant and alert, patient with the students and dedicated to our campus safety which is really awesome and helpful for all of us.
We've been trying to stay updated via Twitter/the news mostly, however for the past 2 hours there's really been no new information put out. We were listening to police scanners for a really long time before they shut down. Campus remains on lockdown as does the city of Boston as ordered by the governor. We are under the impression that the police asked the media to stop reporting on the details of the story so they wouldn't compromise the mission/operational security.
We asked our source about the events of last night as well. Here's the rundown we got:
When it was actually happening I could only hear sirens outside my window heading north towards Watertown. It's about 3 miles from here so we couldn't hear gunshots, explosives or anything else. Since then we've just heard choppers and police sirens, and we have seen Boston Police on our campus (not just Boston College police which is more for campus safety). A lot of our friends are in National Guard units that got activated this morning, so they were allowed to leave campus and head to the armories. We haven't heard anything from them yet.
We also talked about the atmosphere at Boston College, with the entire campus being on lockdown:
People here are surprisingly calm for the entire situation. I think a lot more people were panicking this morning, but from what I can tell everyone is just staying inside and trying to follow the news as closely as possible. Since Monday we've sort of been prepared for anything, so this is obviously a scary situation but none of us feel directly threatened and it's not entirely surprising. Everyone's definitely inspired and looking to statements from political leadership, the whole "Boston Strong" thing is really big and the city has definitely united in the last five days. One of the most annoying things I think are random reports of suspicious packages everywhere, which we've sort of been encountering since the beginning of the week. It's hard to tell what's actually going on with all the rumors flying around which is the hardest part, especially being so close to everything.
It's clear that the Boston College community remains united and supportive of each during these trying times. Credit should be give to the Boston College administration and public safety for helping students as well as remaining vigilant. We'll update this post if our source gives us any more information.