A snaking hose from a com­pact vacuum drooped from Emily Shafer’s shoulder as she moved its fil­tered nozzle inside a pair of worn, dirt-​​smudged run­ning shoes.

They’re just kind of gritty,” Shafer said above the soft, steady noise of the vacuum. “There’s plant debris; there’s sand. We’re just trying to get some of that off.”

This was not an ordi­nary cleaning job, and these were not ordi­nary shoes.

Like the other run­ning gear lined up before Shafer, the shoes had been placed on Boyl­ston Street and Copley Square nearly a year ago at a makeshift memo­rial for the Boston Marathon bombing victims.

Read the article at The Boston Globe →