Tragedy in Boston

April 15, 2013

Wow! I am speechless and in disgust of what happened in Boston today.

It makes me incredibly sad that on a day where we were supposed to be celebrating the accomplishments of 27,000 runners in the Boston Marathon, a tragedy struck and killed and injured far too many people.

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Kristy, my sister who also ran the marathon, and I were able to finish thankfully. Kristy finished about 30 minutes before the bombs went off, and I finished a mere 10 minutes prior to the explosions. Oddly enough, I was actually the furthest from the bombs. My sister was in the medical tent being treated for some minor dehydration; my husband, Craig, saw both explosions and was one block from the second explosion while waiting for a friend; and my parents and aunt were two blocks away from first—having walked by the sites of both bombs moments before they went off. So scary! God’s hand was definitely protecting my family!

After I finished the race, I proceeded down the road to pick up various post-race items the volunteers were handing out: recovery food, medals, blankets, and then made my way to pick up the bag I had checked at the beginning of the race. As I was changing into warmer clothes right next to the buses, I heard the first explosion. I immediately looked towards the large boom and saw a huge cloud of smoke in the sky. Just a few seconds later another explosion went off. I had no idea what had happened. To me, it sounded like cannons going off. I knew it was Patriot’s Day, and yesterday (Sunday) I had seen a Paul Revere reenactment with guns going off, so that was the first thing to pop into my head.

I heard other racers around me say things such as, “Was that supposed to happen?” “Did they do that last year?” No one had any idea what was going on. As we were standing there in perplexity, swarms of people started moving away from the area where the explosions had gone off and telling people to move back.

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(Crazy to think two days earlier we stood at the finish where the tragedy occurred.)

I still had no idea what was going on. By this time, I had gotten my warm clothes on and was making my way down the streets towards the area where my family and I had decided to meet up. On my way, I called my parents, sister, and husband to see where they were, but my calls were not going through. (There were just too many people making calls.) I slowly made my way to the meeting area and saw a large number of police, ambulance, and rescue vehicles all heading towards the area where the explosions went off.

I immediately saw my mom, dad, and aunt and started to discuss what was going on. They really were not sure what had happened either but were making guesses as to what it might be. I had passed a few people saying the word “bomb,” but I didn’t know if this was accurate. They weren’t quite sure either but told me my sister was safe in the medical tent and Craig was okay as well.

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(We don’t believe these ambulances were because of the tragedy. Instead, we were informed these ambulances were lined up in an area a few blocks from the end of the race on stand-by for any runners who may need medical assistance.)

We stood around trying to figure out what was going on and trying to figure out how to meet-up with everyone since phone calls were going through. (Luckily we were able to text.) After a while, Kristy came back from the medical tent, which was now being used for those who were wounded by the explosions.  After that it took nearly an hour to get in contact with Craig to find out where he was. It was very good to see everyone and know they were all safe. We are now enjoying time together tonight with each other.

This morning, while we were waiting to start the race, we observed a moment of silence for the Sandy Hook tragedy. And even more tragic was that near the 26 mile marker, which was near where the second bomb went off, there was a memorial for the 26 people who died in that tragedy.

Thank you all for your comments, e-mails, and Facebook messages checking to see if we were okay. I feel incredibly blessed that no one in my family was injured because it could have easily been a different story if I would have finished 10 minutes slower or my parents hadn’t gotten past the area in the time they did. God is a good God and even though in this moment of this tragedy it is hard to imagine good could ever come from this, but I am confident God will be able to bring positive light to this situation.

30 Comments
    1. Breaks my heart that people can do such terrible things to others. Thankful that you guys are all safe though.

    1. I was so excited to watch your progress and cheer you on from NC! Then so sad that someone would ruin such an amazing day. I’m so so glad your family was safe and relatively quickly reunited.

    1. This is Peggy’s friend, Jess. I’m so relieved you and your family are safe! I thought of you as soon as I heard about the bombs! What a sad day…

      1. Glad you are safe. I was tracking my husband online and had a few extremely tense hours as I waited to hear from him while trying to manage a classroom of students… Local media is curious and checking on all 41 Alaskan runners. If you don’t mind, I’ll share your name as confirmed safe. Godspeed.

    1. I am so glad you and your family are ok. I followed you as well as three of my friends via The AT&T texting ability so I knew you had all finished within mere minutes of each other. I was concerned you were possibly waiting for Kristy and kept checking your blog as I didn’t have any other way to make sure you were ok. I, too and mad and sad and this senseless evil.

    1. I’ve been following your blog for awhile but first time commenting. Happy to hear that you and your family are alright.

    1. glad to hear that you and your family are all safe! at work yesterday i was tracking everyone i knew who was running, so i saw you finished. then i heard about what happened and thankfully all my other friends and their families are safe. even though i just know you through your blog i was thinking about you and am happy to know that you are safe too! although it seems silly to say this now, great race!

    1. I am really sorry that you won’t just remember this day as a day of celebration, joy and accomplishment- but hope that you are able to focus on that through all of the negativity and horror that happened. It is really crazy to think there are such sick-minded individuals in this world- but we are show that again and again.
      You should be SO proud of your race, regardless- you were awesome!! And you’re forever part of something really big.

    1. Fr. Vasili emailed that you and your family were safe. God bless you.

    1. Thanks Michelle for taking the time to let us know that you all are safe.Margaret is in Omaha and called as soon as she heard the news to see if I knew if you were alright.Thank God that you are. See you when you get home.

    1. I got chills reading about how close you and your family were to the bombs! I can’t believe that Craig saw both of them. I am so glad that you guys are safe! What a horrible addition to such a wonderful weekend for you and your’s…

    1. I still can’t believe it myself, so I can only imagine how you feel having seen it all first hand. I am so glad that you are safe and sound. You’re right, God was truly watching over you all. My prayers will be with you and all of those in Boston!

    1. I can’t remember how I found your blog but I’ve been following it for a while now and always look enjoy reading your posts about running and food (because running and food occupy a lot of my time as well!). I thought about you when I saw the bombing and am so glad to know that you are safe and sound. Also, great job to you and your sister for running Boston! You did it!!

    1. […] tragedy on Facebook, blogs, money being raised, runs being run, etc. I continue to be in shock with what happened on Monday. I keep replaying that day and how the littlest of things could have potentially caused a different […]

    1. […] to interview about my win at the Kenai River Marathon, how I keep running mile after mile, and my Boston experience. I was flattered someone wanted to write an article about me, but I was more than happy to […]

    1. […] I ran the Boston Marathon—not the whole way; I did have to walk portions of it—but I did finish! It was quite the emotional roller coaster going from being on ‘cloud nine’ while running and then trying to wrap my head around why someone would chose to set off the bombs at such a joyous event. (Read about my experience after the bombs went off here.) […]

    1. […] It was such a joyous celebration at the finish—people were cheering wildly even though I was probably the 15,xxx runner to cross the finish line. I can vividly still recall how my body felt, the thoughts going through my head, and the details about the day. But when those bombs went off, I only head and saw a slight glimpse of the impact they had on that day. As I was walking to meet my family in our pre-designated location, my mind had the hardest time comprehending what had just happened. I heard, what I thought, were just rumors of bombs and people being injured. I didn’t think these things could be real because why would someone want to ruin such a joyous occasion. It wasn’t until we got back to the place we were staying nearly 4 hours later, I saw the pandemonium that occurred that day. You can read more details about my experience here. […]

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