Sighs of relief for Tampa families with relatives in Boston - FOX 13 News

Sighs of relief for Tampa families with relatives in Boston

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

Some Bay area families have college students in Boston who lived through Friday's tense city-wide lockdown.

Bryce Walker and Andre Gonzalez both graduated from Tampa's Jesuit High School and currently attend Harvard University.

Gonzalez described a piercing sound echoing just outside his window Thursday night.

"There was a constant stream of sirens and police cars throughout the night, for hours and hours," he said Friday afternoon, from his dorm room.

Law enforcement agencies were swarming the Massachusetts Institute of Technology campus, after a university police officer was shot, allegedly by the Boston bombing suspects.

MIT's campus is just a five minute drive from the neighboring halls of Harvard.

"We were coming back from a restaurant, and we thought we should probably head back to the dorms, so we did. Only an hour later, that exact street I was on was the scene of a rapid car chase," Gonzalez said.

The overnight firefight had the entire Harvard campus on lockdown. Jesuit High School graduate and Harvard football player Bryce Walker didn't realize the university was shutdown overnight.

"We actually have early morning practice right now, so I got up around 5 am, out the door by 5:30 am. As soon as I stepped out of the gates, I wasn't even two steps out of the gates and I was turned back around by law enforcement to get back inside and to stay down," Walker said Friday.

Students were instructed to stay indoors and away from windows until around 6 p.m. Friday.

"It's dead. Everyone's in their rooms. Whenever we do all meet up to go eat together, it's been very quiet," Walker said.

The two have been keeping in constant touch with family back home in Tampa, as they waited for an end to a terrifying 24-hours.

"You are scared. There is a moment of fear where you're thinking, this could be happening here, this could right around the corner, especially when it happened so close," Walker said.

There are nearly 60 different universities within the metro Boston area. Harvard students were sent updates throughout the day through the university's emergency email and text message system.

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