The news alert came in a weekly sales meeting.
“Two bombs went off near the Boston Marathon finish line,” a director relayed.
My hands went up to my mouth in a gasp.
Shocked, my mind reeled over my own Boston Marathon run just two years ago, remembering the throngs of hundreds of thousands of spectators, the runners, the race coordinators and volunteers. I couldn’t stop saying “I can’t believe it.”
I texted my cousin, who lived in Boston. Then Facebook messaged a friend who ran the same year and volunteered with the Boston Athletic Association and was running the race that day.
The response from both over the Boston Marathon bombings was exactly how I felt: shock.
The Boston Marathon isn’t just a race where people gut it out to see if they can best their time running 26.2 miles. People from all over the world are represented. It’s a city holiday for Boston; Patriot’s Day. Everyone congregates in the city.
Through it all, I’m encouraged by the unique spirit I’ve come to see in most runners: solidarity, love, kindness. It makes me proud to hear stories of runners rendering aid; running to the hospital after their race to give blood and more. That’s what this life is all about, especially in moments like these when we realize how fragile life really is.
My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families; for those who were unable to finish and for those who saw unspeakable images that will no doubt be burned into their memories for years to come.
Even though I’m fighting a bug today, I’m going to try to do a little run around the block for Boston and I encourage you to do the same. What happened there never should have, but the spirit of runners will prevail.
God bless the USA; God bless runners and God bless Boston.