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Sisters face long recoveries after marathon blast

Published: Wednesday, April 17 2013 7:47 a.m. MDT

BOSTON — The family of two sisters who suffered serious leg injuries in the Boston Marathon bombing say both women face long recoveries.

The Charlotte Observer reports that Nicole Gross, a 31-year-old fitness instructor from Charlotte, N.C. and her sister, 29-year-old Erika Brannock , a preschool teacher in Towson, Md., were at the marathon to watch their mother run. Gross had trained 57-year old Carol Downing, of Monkton, Md., for the race.

Both women remain hospitalized. Brannock had her left leg amputated below the knee. Gross suffered a severed Achilles tendon and two broken legs.

Photos of Gross taken moments after the blast appeared in several newspapers and online. The family issued a statement Wednesday asking the media to stop using the images, saying they are "tremendously painful" for the family.

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