PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — For every runner the story is personal.
Bob Clark was close by when the explosions happened.
“Three tenths of a mile from the finish line,” Clark, a Butler County native, said.
His thoughts immediately were to his wife, Patty.
“She was near the finish,” said Clark.
“I heard an explosions, and I was with a group of people,” Clark’s wife, Patty, said. “Everyone was cheering, and somebody said, ‘What was that thunder?’ Then, we heard another and looked over and saw smoke.”
The angst of not knowing lasted an hour.
“I didn’t know where he was. It was pretty scary and pretty chaotic,” Patty added.
Orderly chaos is what the finish area became after the explosions.
“Everybody just stopped dead, you know; nobody saying a word,” said Robert Henderson, who finished the race a half hour before the blast. “Then, we started moving again, and about 12, 15 seconds later, the second one; and naturally, at that point, everybody started putting two and two together.”
Ben Gross finished almost an hour before the blast, and was in a nearby pub celebrating with friends when he heard the blasts and watched the day turned upside down.
“It was horrible,” said Gross, of Rosslyn Farms. “It went from being a celebratory experience to everybody very somber and grave. It was horrible.”
Despite the reality of what happened, the runners coming home to Pittsburgh had nothing but praise for the Boston Athletic Club and Boston Police.
“The security and the organizations, up until that point, was top notch. There were bomb-sniffing dogs in the race crowds at the beginning,” said Colleen Early, who finished about 50 minutes before the blast. “You finish, you are on such and emotional high, and a few minutes later you couldn’t be any lower. It’s just devastating.”
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