Tuesday, April 16, 2013
“The World Hellenic Inter-Parliamentary Association conveys its deepest sympathy to the people of Boston, Massachusetts and the running community who today are dealing with the shocking and cowardly explosions at the 117th Boston Marathon.
This major global sporting event attended by many thousands of runners and participants from around the world is known for its celebration of endurance, willpower and freedom epitomized by the original Greek Marathon in 490BC.
It is an event sponsored and supported by New England’s large Greek community where the Greek Consul General in the spirit of the original Marathon crowns the victor a winning wreath of olive branches.
The olive wreath in the ancient Greek world symbolizes peace.
The W.H.I.A has 7 members in the State House of Massachusetts and I was honoured to be a participant just over a week ago in the State House recognition of Greek National Day.
Today we stand with the people of Boston who have lost loved ones and been injured. We wish US authorities a speedy outcome in bringing the culprits to justice.
The Greek community around the globe is dismayed that such an event that commemorates the best of the ancient Greek world should be targeted with such tragedy.
The Marathon long-distance running event (42.195 kilometers -26 miles and 385 yards) is run commemorating the Greek messenger Pheidippides who, according to the legend, was sent from the battlefield of Marathon to Athens to announce that the Persians had been defeated at the battle of Marathon (490 BC).
That Greek victory secured for mankind the intellectual treasures of Athens and the liberal enlightenment of the Western world”.