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Associated Press
Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman, left, and spectator Carlos Arredondo react after both received honorary degrees during commencement ceremonies for Fisher College in Boston.

2 marathon survivors address grads

– A Boston Marathon bombing survivor and the man who saved his life teamed up again Saturday for a commencement speech, telling the new graduates of Fisher College to “keep running forward.”

Jeff Bauman, who lost his legs in last year’s attacks, told the crowded auditorium in Boston how his life was turned upside-down 13 months ago. He wasn’t sure if he would ever walk again, but he never gave up, he said.

“We are all running a marathon in one way or another,” said Bauman, who now wears prosthetics. “Today you are at the finish line of one race, but life is full of starting lines and heartbreak hills. You just have to keep running forward,” Bauman said.

Bauman and Carlos Arredondo became symbols of courage April 15, 2013, when tragedy struck the streets of Boston. Arredondo, who was donning a cowboy hat and passing out American flags when the bombs exploded near the finish line, rushed to save Bauman in a moment captured in an AP photo.

While in the hospital, Bauman helped authorities identify the bombing suspects.

On Saturday, Bauman and Arredondo beamed as they were presented with honorary college degrees.

Bauman and Arredondo, now close friends, touched on the power of community in their speeches, praising the other first-responders and residents who stepped up and offered endless support.

The two have had a busy year. Bauman got engaged, and his fiancée is expecting a baby due July 14. He released his memoir last month. Bauman and Arredondo sat near each other at the finish line of this year’s Boston Marathon. They were also guests of Michelle Obama at this year’s State of the Union address.

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