A very appropriate start to today's daily, Bill. Thank you.
I will get in some miles at lunch today - remembering those affected.
My co-worker Justin, who is still out there with family, but flying back today I believe, was contacted by local media yesterday. He wrote a statement to our local news stations, partly to satisfy their inquiry, but also therapeutic for him to write it out. Even though it's long, I'll share it here because someone may find his words helpful: (feel free to skim to the bottom - it is quite lengthy)
Today, I ran in the Boston Marathon. I trained and ran marathons for almost five years (if you count two years off) in order to qualify for this marathon and get to experience Patriot’s Day in Boston. My Mother flew in from Nashville and my Father flew in from Baltimore, my wife and I made the trip from Medford. I experienced joy like few other times in my life. Running is my sanctuary. Running is the sanctuary for almost everyone who participates in endurance races like the Boston Marathon. Our Rogue Valley is home to a running culture unlike few in the country and today was one of the most important moments of my running “career.” As I ran through the towns outside of Boston, I was amazed at what we can accomplish together, as a union, how much encouragement we can give each other, how much we can push each other through anything. I dedicated each mile to one of my friends and thought about the beauty of their triumphs over the various struggles in their lives. I was astounded by the amount of support from the communities. I was impressed by my fellow runners and the spirit of brotherhood and sisterhood we shared on the course. As I’ve been in Boston, I’ve also hoped to take in as much as I could of the culture of Patriot’s Day. As a Public Defender: liberty, freedom and justice are important values that I hope to protect through my work and I appreciate how much those are diminished when we do not work together to encourage our fellow man and protect society. As I finished the race, I limped to meet my family and feel their congratulations. I hugged them with a sense of fulfillment I can hardly explain. It was a moment similar to that of the other major memories in my life, it validated my efforts and brought us closer together. I gave my wife a medal made for supporters that said the best accomplishments in life are shared, not individual. My Mom and Dad cried tears of pride and we made our way towards our car to go and refuel with some food. The crowd was huge, something I could not really describe by comparing it to anywhere else I have ever been. We arrived in our car, paid our parking, and began our journey back to the comforts we hoped to share. As we drove, we all heard something we thought was a giant metal load or object being dropped. We approached the intersection of Newbury Street and Dartmouth Street as the first explosion occurred. My Dad, who is hard of hearing and uses hearing aids, has had to drop his hearing aids off for service. As he heard the first noise, he said something about how it didn’t sound like it was just a load being dropped to him. We thought little of it but 20-30 seconds later, the second noise came. With it, the car jerked to the right as I was driving. That noise was accompanied by a flash of sorts seemingly about 60 yards away. I said to my family, “something horrible is happening.” We saw debris fly out on Boylston and hundreds if not thousands of people running up Dartmouth. Several were injured, all of them in panic. One woman was bleeding profusely and crying. She seemed stuck in shock, her husband or boyfriend beside her and them running in panic. I wished I could have removed her shock, taken back her injuries, or helped her more than we did in calling out to her through the window. Emergency vehicles flooded the scene. We all began crying, wondering what had happened. It was clear it was not an accident. We drove away as fast as we could and were able to get away, albeit everything seemed slowed down. I felt everything you could imagine: fear that there would be more explosions, fear that a larger building might fall, grief that I had brought my family to this place, fear that I might lose what was important to me, and a sadness I cannot express for what I had seen and for those that were injured. The only comparison I have is a poor one, to the video of crowds running from the scenes at the World Trade Center in New York but I have never seen terror as I did in the faces of those fleeing. We are staying in a hotel well outside of the city. Our lives will never be the same as they were before this moment, our memories will always be with those that we saw that were injured, the other runners who were there with us, and those who were senselessly murdered in the tragedy. Distance running is a sacred community. Running is our sanctuary. The Boston Marathon represents one pinnacle of that community and care. We have been crying, grieving, praying, and caring for one another since the tragedy occurred. We long to be back in Southern Oregon. I was unable to eat much at all despite being exhausted, my post race beer was an act of desperation instead of one of joy. My wife has been shaking like a leaf. Someone recklessly careened into our sanctuary today and made it different – but they did not destroy it as our strength and community cannot be destroyed by cramps, fatigue or terror. We have all been robbed of quite a bit today – I don’t feel I should be breathing this air. I am scared to enjoy the rest of my trip to this amazing city. I feel ashamed , in a silly way, that the crowds we runners brought to Boston attracted such an attack, and feel like I owe something to the people here who supported me and to those who were harmed. I am devastated by what I have seen but am overwhelmed by the support I have received from friends. One of my running groups, Southern Oregon Running Enthusiasts, will dedicate our regular Sunday trail run to the victims of the Boston Marathon tragedy. We will run around Lost Creek Lake (or an out and back for those not seeking to run the full distance) on Sunday at 10:30am, meeting at the day use area of Joseph Stewart State Park and departing from there. We ask people to carpool so that we do not overburden the facilities. Between now and then, we will seek to find the most reputable charity for the victims we can and will ask people to donate at least $1 for every mile they want to run to the victims. Justin
So, Sunday I hope to be running with my running group (S.O.R.E.) around Lost Creek Lake, 18.6 miles, and raising money for the victims of the attack.
Like Wild said, thanks for the updates yesterday and for all the checking in. All the runners from here are ok as well as a niece who was a volunteer at the race. A lot of sad and anxious times yesterday.
Ran 4.1 this morning.
Standing closer to me in line will not get you to the checkout any faster.
I am dealing with qute a mix of emotions: shock, anger, and sadness among them. I feel for those injured and traumatized, their families, the running community, and the country. What has been a historic and wonderful event will be forever marred by the actions of a subhuman person or group. I normally try not to be a vindictive person but feel this is a situation where nothing would be too harsh to happen to the perpetrator(s).
Jay, sorry to hear about your back and the trip cancellation. I hope your doctor gets you fixed up.
Nice long runs for paavo, Holly, and stumpy.
We're visiting my mother, sister and brother in law in Ludington. This morning, it was in the high 30s and there was a light wind. I got in 8 miles at a slow 12 min pace, glad that I am able to get out and run.
Take care, my runjing friends.
I haven't had time to read the thread through but wanted to say hi & send love to each of you.
wish I'd thought to wear a non-Boston finisher's shirt!
Thank you all for caring so much!! Today is hard - filled with so many mixed emotions. Horror, sadness, gratitude. I am so thankful my family and friends at the finish line are all physically safe, I am thankful I spent more time with Ribs as we waited around mile 25.5, I am horrified at this attack on our city and running community and I am so deeply saddened for everyone involved. I keep reminding myself that there is more good than evil in this world and I am thankful to have all of you as part of my life.
This morning I had a medical appointment at the Mass. General. As I was leaving I saw 2 surgeons being interviewed by a local TV channel. A young man standing there showed me photos on his I- phone that he had taken earlier in the back bay near Copley Square. You could see pieces of glass and bandage wrappers on the sidewalk. When I got on the subway to go home I noticed someone carrying a marathon bag sitting with his family. He was one of the "4:09" non finishers. It took him 2.5 hours to find his family. He feared that they were at the finish line. Fortunately they weren't.
These scenes are being repeated all over the city.
I wore much of my Boston marathon gear this morning-hat, shirt, jacket.
Did a 2-mile warm up, then I had planned 10 x 200m @5k race pace but I went a little faster (either that or I have a PR coming Sat.) and did 12 Boston solidarity intervals, then a cool down.
"Pain only hurts" -Scott Jurek
I just want to say that I love all of you! Really, you have all been an extended part of my family for several years now and what happened yesterday has rocked us all to our core. It was heartwarming to see all the familiar names popping in yesterday to make sure everyone was okay. We are family.
"My sunshine doesn't come from the skies,It comes from the love in my dog's eyes."
I'm not sure I can say anything that hasn't already been said. I think that one of the things I'm mad about...among others...is a selfish one. I was looking forward to going home and reading everybody's congratulatory offerings to all those who ran Boston. I wanted to tell bhearn how impressed I was with his consistant pace and how I watched as he slowly crept up on and passed a 20 year old friend of mine who had gone out running sub 6's for the first 5k. I wanted to hear rib's story of running his last Boston while sprinkling ashes along the way. I wanted to hear everybody's happy stories and share in their accomplishments. Instead, I had to go home and watch this stupid act of cowardly violence over and over and over. I had listen to all the stories of fear and pain and anger. I was feeling so many emotions and, at times, I didn't really know why. I think, maybe, this time somebody attacked people I care about...somebody hurt people in my community...and I felt guilty that I wasn't there going through it with them. I don't know...I'm not making any sense, I know.
Anyway--when everybody can breath agian--I hope you all are willing to share your Boston Marathon experiances and allow us to cheer your accomplishments.
I think one of the things that is really bothering me today is that most of the victims were spectators (not all, but most) - family and friends of those running the Marathon ... those who selflessly have supported those of us who are runners. Often they have sacrificed their time with us so that we can pursue our passions/hobbies. Seems so wrong for them to suffer.
"Some are the strong, silent type. You can't put your finger on exactly what it is they bring to the table until you run without them and then you realize that their steadiness fills a hole that leaks energy in their absence." - Kristin Armstrong
4.22 miles from me-- to boston-- with love!
goodness is its own reward; for more tangible outcomes, you need to try badness.
I am wearing my blue and gold Boston jacket, which is about the only way you'll ever see that colour combination on me.
Tonight, I will go for a short run (I am unable to execute any other kind of run these days) and try to give back a few of the miles that were stolen from this year's participants.
Their sense of safety and security, though, I cannot give back, but I hope and pray that they return as quickly as soul-healing can effect.
Thank you Tammy for keeping us informed. It was a relief to hear that everyone was safe.
I decided not to wear my Boston shirt or jacket to school today because of the kids. I find it most difficult to face the fact that very young people were among the victims; that someone would do something so horrible to innocent, little people. Some of my older students quietly approached me today with comments such as “I’m glad you weren’t there.” I had to force the lump down my throat to reply “Me, too.”
I agree with wildchild that there is something extra special about this group. Runners in general are a kind and supportive lot, and this group has been open and welcoming to so many over the years. It was a comfort to find everyone, and see everyone report “home”.
My run this afternoon will be on a soft path. It will be a prayer.
Instructions for living a life:
Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it. ~~~Mary Oliver
MM#209 / JapanJoyful#803
Since I don’t run enough to have much to share in real about running feelings and emotions in my non-running circles, I’ve always appreciated Aamos and divechief welcoming me through their 2004 Seattle Marathon thread into the boomer-and-beyond precursor to our current cyberspace community.
However, the outpouring of support showing that so many who used to be here are still with us in spirit seems to make us as real as any family coming together after long absences when necessary, especially seeing aamos and jtv who I’ve run with before, . .. though I needed a bicycle to keep up to jtv and only got to glimpse amy on the out-and-backs. I’m a lucky guy..ps mikee - you never made more sense.pps re wildchild’s idea to give a 4:09 to everyone who finished after that.
re Mike's comments... Tet (priceless as always... ) you reminded of something I meant to share earlier from a friend who has run Boston many times. He's going through a lot right now, his son is in his 3rd bout of fighting Hodgkins Disease. They ran Philly together last year, which was great. When Matthew (the son) signed up he'd been given the all clear... was back in chemo by the time of the marathon but he did great. Anyway!! I liked what he said, here it is:
We will not let the anger of any one person take away the accomplishments of those who ran the Boston Marathon. The shadow cast upon the race is not as strong as the glow cast by your finisher’s medal. And those who did not get a chance to cross the finish line, in my book you all ran a 4:09.
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