Boston Marathon Bombings Remembered with Moment of Silence

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The bells of Boston's Old South Church tolled as a flag was hoisted up a small flagpole Tuesday at the spot of the Boston Marathon finish line, one year to the minute after tragedy struck there.

At 2:49 p.m., Boston police officers held their hands up in salute and former Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, Vice President Joe Biden, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, and current Boston Mayor Martin Walsh joined in as a chorus sang "The Star-Spangled Banner" following a somber moment of silence.

Officials, including Vice President Joe Biden, center right, and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, second from right, cover their hearts with their hands during a flag-raising to mark the anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings.NBC News

The American flag was raised in the spot where twin explosions went off on April 15, 2013, 10 seconds apart, injuring 260 people and killing three. Sixteen people lost limbs. A fourth person was killed in the aftermath of the attack.

Crowds lined downtown Boston's rainy streets as the one-year anniversary was marked. Simultaneously, in Washington, D.C., President Obama held his own moment of silence to honor the victims.

Earlier Tuesday, officials, survivors, family members and first responders attended a memorial service. Menino, who was mayor at the time of the bombings, urged Boston to stay strong.

“To the family and friends who will always miss their loved ones, you are strong at this broken place. To the victims whose long journey toward healing has just begun, you are strong at this broken place,” he told the packed convention center.

—Elizabeth Chuck