Today two explosive devices were set off at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. As of 7pm on Monday, two people are confirmed dead and 100 are injured.
I wasn't going to post about the Boston tragedy. I know most of you feel just the same way I do. Heartbreak. Devastation. Shock. Anger. Confusion.
I spent the first four hours of my morning listening to the live stream of the Boston Marathon. I excitedly watched the elites cruise through Boston, while I watched my runner tracking stream post updates on friends out there on the course. I was so excited for Boston Monday.
If you're not a runner you may not know that Boston is one of the premier marathons in the world. Most of the times if you want to run a race, then you sign up. If it's a popular race then you enter a lottery and hope you get in. Not at Boston. Boston has strict and fast qualifying times that you must meet within a certain age-specific time range and specific marathons. These are the best of the best marathoners in the world. Kyle's sister Kelsey qualified for Boston and we were talking about a trip there in 2014. How fast do you have to be to get to Boston? My goal for my marathon is 4:20 - I'd have to be 40 minutes faster to Boston qualify. Boston is run on a Monday. Races aren't run on Mondays. It's a big deal.
The sight of the attack on the finish line makes me physically sick. I feel like I'm watching someone try to hurt my friends. People who have trained for years on their final 50 meters to victory only to have that joy replaced by senseless hate and violence.
Runners have such a strong community and bond. I think fondly of anyone I pass with a "26.2" bumper sticker. After a race I'll chat up someone who was side-by-side with me on the course. Runners are a family. And somebody hurt my family.
What thought upsets me more? That if I was running, my family would've have been there, at the finish, waiting for me. I can't shake that thought from my head. I'm sure the same thought haunts runners who have used the thought of their family at the finish as motivation for those final miles.
I'm a race announcer. The view point that the news is replaying of the bomb is my view point for hours on race day. I cheer on runner #1 and runner #27,001. It's my office essentially. Someone attacked my family in my office.
Besides the Boston Marathon someone attacked America. It's so hard for all of this to sink in and digest.
On Thursday night I will be announcing the largest 5k in Orlando. Before the race I will introduce the director of the WDW Marathon, a man who owns a legendary running store, and a man who ran and finished Boston today. I don't know how I'll get through it.
Runners are resilient. Americans are resilient. We just keep running.
If you've ever completed a race please consider wearing a race shirt to work tomorrow (even if it's under your work clothes). Let's show the running community that we are united as we #prayforboston