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The mother of Aaron Hern talks to reporters about how people can help her family and themselves in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing.
The television live trucks packed the streets outside the Martinez City Hall so that reporters from around the Bay Area, the country and even the world could hear from the parents of 12-year-old bombing victim Aaron Hern.
Katherine and Alan Hern spoke on Friday for the first time in depth about the day that changed their family's life.
Among the first words out of Katherine's mouth came in the form of a prayer, "Come Holy Spirit. We have been delivered from evil."
Aaron was not at the event outside Martinez City Hall; he was home, waiting for his folks to return so he could get a haircut.
"We'll never be able to erase for him," what happened, Katherine Hern said. "We've tried to give our children a certain level of resiliency...But we never imagined them happening to us."
What happened was a national tragedy.
On April 15, Aaron was one of the nearly 200 people who were injured in the Boston Marathon blasts. He was waiting for his mother to finish the race, when he was struck by shrapnel from the pressure cooker bombs set off that day. Surgeons had to remove the metal shards from his leg, and he remained in Boston at Children's Hospital until last week. No one else in the family was injured in the blast, including his 10-year-old sister, Abby.
The Herns told the harrowing story of the bombing and the outpouring of help that followed within seconds of the blast on Boylston Street.
Alan Hern, a football coach at Alhambra Valley High School, detailed how his son's recovery is progressing: He had to have 86 staples removed from his body, mostly his legs, and he still has some hearing damage left in his ear from a hole in his eardrum. Alan Hern expected Aaron to be back on his feet in about six weeks.
The hardest part for Aaron has not been the physical challenges, his dad said, but the emotional ones.
"He doesn't think that he deserves all the attention," Alan Hern said. "It's really hard for him."
Aaron has been the beneficiary of much attention.
The sixth grader had courtside seats at Thursday's Warriors basketball game, where they beat the Nuggets and now advance to Round 2 of the NBA playoffs, courtesy of the team. He was also paid hospital visits by First Lady Michelle Obama and members of the Oakland A's baseball team while he was at Children's Hospital in Boston.
His mother said that now, Aaron just wants to get back to school and do normal things.
"He's worried about his grades," Katherine Hern said. "He's ready to be Aaron again."