5 weeks later, bombing victims receive BC degrees

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BOSTON (AP/MyFoxBoston.com) - Five weeks after they were blasted by shrapnel from a bomb at the Boston Marathon, three Boston College students walked past their applauding classmates to receive their diplomas.

Brittany Loring, Liza Cherney, and Kaitlynn Cates were badly hurt in the April 15 twin bombings, but they all said they had little doubt they'd be at Monday's ceremony.

Loring and Cherney were at the marathon and Cates was taking a break from work with her friend when the bombs exploded near the finish line.

"My shoes were blown right off. My jeans were ripped open. I was covered," Cates told FOX 25's Crystal Haynes.

Cates lost 25 to 30 percent of her calf and struggled to walk, and climb stairs, but made it to the stage Monday.

Loring is still on crutches and also suffered a skull fracture, burns, and shrapnel wounds.

Cherney is also recovering from shrapnel wounds.

"I'm much stronger than I thought I was," Cherney said.

Post-graduation Loring is planning a wedding and is planning on taking the bar exam.

Cherney is heading back to her native California while Cates says she's planning on leaving the business world to go back to school for a degree in occupational therapy.

A fund has been set up for Cates' recovery: https://www.giveforward.com/fundraiser/lv82/kaitlynnsrecovery