Help Jeff Bauman - friends and family set up this page: donate here
This photo of Jeff Bauman Jr has become another of the iconic images representing the horrific injuries suffered when two bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. This copy has been "sanitized" by cropping, but many of us have seen it in its original form. The photo was apparently taken by a Boston Globe reporter and later pulled from a Flickr account public photostream that might have belonged to the photographer. It has since been copied along with many graphic images taken by that photographer into Imgur albums linked to Reddit posts.
He did, and now, apparently, Jeff Bauman Jr has become an important eyewitness who helped to identify at least one of the bombers.
Jeff, an athlete himself, was at the Boston Marathon finish line waiting for his girlfriend Erin Hurley who was running, when one of the two suspects left the bag nearby and shortly afterwards an explosion blew his legs off and left him in fighting for his life.
Jeff's father knew his son was watching the marathon, and had heard about the explosions. He was trying to reach his son when his stepdaughter called and asked him if he'd seen the photo. Jeff Bauman Sr then turned to the computer, saw the photo and learned what happened to his son.
The Associated Press reported:
Rescuers took the 27-year-old to Boston Medical Center, where doctors found extensive vascular and bone damage.A Bloomberg story posted last night reports on an interview with Jeff Bauman Jr's brother who shared that his brother may be able to identify at least one of the two bombers:
"Unfortunately my son was just in the wrong place at the wrong time," his father, Jeff Bauman, wrote in a Facebook post.
The younger Bauman, who had been at the race to cheer on his girlfriend, had further surgery because of fluid in his abdomen.
"I just can't explain what's wrong with people today, to do this to people," the father wrote. "I'm really starting to lose faith in our country."
Just before 3 p.m. on April 15, Bauman was waiting among the crowd for his girlfriend to cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon. A man wearing a cap, sunglasses and a black jacket over a hooded sweatshirt looked at Jeff, 27, and dropped a bag at his feet, his brother, Chris Bauman, said in an interview.Since then the FBI has released video and photographs of the bombing suspects.
Two and a half minutes later, the bag exploded, tearing Jeff’s legs apart. A picture of him in a wheelchair, bloodied and ashen, was broadcast around the world as he was rushed to Boston Medical Center. He lost both legs below the knee.
“He woke up under so much drugs, asked for a paper and pen and wrote, ‘bag, saw the guy, looked right at me,’” Chris Bauman said yesterday in an interview.
While still in intensive care, Jeff Bauman gave the FBI a description of the man he saw, his brother said.In an interview with the New York Times Jeff Sr shared more about his son:
Bauman’s information helped investigators narrow down whom to look for in hours of video of the attack, he said.
Jeff, 27, is a good kid, never got in trouble, his father said. He likes playing guitar. He works behind the deli counter at Costco. He plans to pay off his student loans and go back to school at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.Jeff's family credits the man in the cowboy hat for saving his life:
During the marathon, he was standing at the finish line waiting for [his girlfriend] Ms. Hurley, alongside her two roommates. Ms. Hurley was still about a mile away when the blasts went off, far enough away that she did not know what had happened. Why had everyone stopped?
Jeff was the first casualty brought to Boston Medical, his family was told. He went through the first operation and then a second, about 1 a.m., to drain internal fluids caused by the blunt trauma.
The Baumans knew how lucky Jeff had been. “The man in the cowboy hat — he saved Jeff’s life,” Ms. Bauman said. Mr. Bauman’s eyes widened. He said: “There’s a video where he goes right to Jeff, picks him right up and puts him on the wheelchair and starts putting the tourniquet on him and pushing him out. I got to talk to this guy!”
The man in the cowboy hat, Carlos Arredondo, 52, had been handing out American flags to runners when the first explosion went off. His son Alexander was a Marine killed in Iraq in 2004, and in the years since he has handed out the flags as a tribute.
With the first blast, Mr. Arredondo jumped over the fence and ran toward the people lying on the ground. What happened next, he later recounted to a reporter: He found a young man, a spectator, whose shirt was on fire. He beat out the flames with his hands. The young man, who turned out to be Jeff Bauman, had lost the lower portion of both legs. He took off a shirt and tied it around the stump of one leg. He stayed with Mr. Bauman, comforting him, until emergency workers came to help carry him to an ambulance.
He helped only one man, Mr. Bauman.
*We have created this fundraiser to raise money to help support our dear friend, Jeff and his family. As most of you know, Jeff was severely affected by the tragedy that had taken place at the Patriots Day Boston Marathon this year. Throughout this difficult time we want to help in every which way we possibly can to get Bauman back on track as soon as possible.photo posted on fundraising page
*Medical bills are going to start rolling in, let's get a head start on helping out Bauman and his family! Every dollar counts!!
"We all knew you were the nicest kid, now we know your the strongest!!"
We're all praying for a quick and safe recovery!