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Vice President Joe Biden marked the first anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings with a strong message to terrorists that Americans don't yield to fear — getting in a little dig at the Red Sox as he went.

"Even though I'm not a Boston fan, I love you guys, man," Biden told survivors, first responders, and families of victims at a memorial service in Boston's Hynes Convention Center on Tuesday afternoon. "What an incredible city. It really is."

The Scranton, Pa., native went on to explain, "I know politicians aren't supposed to say they're not Red Sox fans, but where I came from, if you were a Red Sox fan, you got the living hell kicked out of you."

He told survivors of the twin explosions by the marathon finish line that they were inspirations to "people all across this country who have suffered tragedy."

Vice President Joe Biden speaks at a tribute for victims of the Boston Marathon bombings.Pool

"You're living proof that Americans can never, never, never be defeated. You are the proof of that assertion. So much has been taken from you, but you never, ever gave up," he said.

He praised the support groups, charity donations, and other acts of kindness in Boston over the past year, and said Americans' refusal to give in to fear "infuriates" terrorists who commit attacks like the marathon bombings.

"Next Monday, on Patriots' Day, when I'm told up to 36,000 people will line up to start the marathon, you will send a resounding message around the world not just to rest of the world, but to the terrorists that we will never yield. We will never cower," he said. "America will never, ever, ever stand down. We are Boston. We are America. We respond. We endure. We overcome. And we own the finish line."

—Elizabeth Chuck