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Lynn - ''nothing will stop us''

One cannot help but be impressed by the courage, determination, and grit of the townspeople of Lynn, Mass., as they go forward with a contemplated $200 million renewal project following the devastating fire that destroyed 17 buildings in their historic downtown area this past weekend. That sense of resolution was underscored by Mayor Antonio Marino who vowed that ''nothing will stop us from rebuilding Lynn as we had planned.''

In all, some 95 Massachusetts and New Hampshire communities responded professionally - and in many cases, heroically - by sending equipment and firefighters to battle the blaze that roared through a four-block area. It is a tribute to everyone involved that no lives were lost.

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A blue-collar city of about 90,000 people ten miles northeast of Boston, Lynn has a proud history that dates back to the early 17th century. For many years Lynn was a world shoe-manufacturing center, and it was there also that the first successful US turbojet engine was designed and built in 1942.

Other US cities, of course, have also experienced great loss. San Francisco was destroyed by earthquake; Atlanta by war. Seattle was once gutted by fire. Yet they, and many additional communities that have had to face their own testing times, emerged the stronger for their ordeal.

Those who know Lynn well have no doubt that it will, too.

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