(WHDH) — “I mean, we’re doing well, as well as can be expected.”
It’s been five years. The family of fallen MIT Officer Sean Collier still struggles as the anniversary of the attack approaches.
Jennifer Lemmerman says her brother loved this country.
“From the time he was a baby in a car seat he always had a thing about American flags. He loved them. He would salute in his car seat and make everyone else in the car salute. It was just something. He would draw them all the time and give them out these little flags he would do with crayons. So every time I see an American flag, I think of Sean”
Collier was shot and killed three days after Boston Marathon bombing. The school put up a memorial on campus.
“That’s the spot that he was killed.” remembers Lemmerman “They’ve taken it and turned it into a place where I actually want to go. I go there more than I go to the cemetery. That’s the place I go when I want to be quiet and think of Sean.”
The family has also started a foundation to remember Sean and things important to him. It gives scholarships to those entering law enforcement and supports police officers, especially families with loved ones who were killed in action. The foundation also gives grants to groups helping at-risk youth
“Kids who might not have had certain opportunities,” adds Lemmerman.
Next week, Jennifer will quietly remember her brother.
“We’ve become close with people in this community, those who’ve been affected by the marathon bombing, so on the 15th and days surrounding, we try to support those events and do what we can, but on the 18th, we get together with ourselves and Sean’s friends and we remember him privately; that’s kind of our day,” Lemmerman reflects.
It will be a day to remember, reflect and honor.
“You know in five years life does go on and our family has had a lot of wonderful things happen. We’ve had cousins and babies born and marriages that he’s missed. It’s sad for us that’s he’s not there but it’s also sad for him because he never got to have all that with us,” Lemmermann continues.
“I think that’s, for me, one of the things that gets me a lot. Just what was taken from a 27-year-old who was just starting out,” said Lemmermann.
7’s Adam Williams asks, “What’s your message to the people of Boston and New England who think of him as part of their family?”
“It is so important to me, to know that people even in their memories of him are carrying him forward. It’s just, it means everything to me,” said Lemmermann.
For more information go to: http://www.officercolliermemorialfund.org
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