12 Boston Marathon Survivors on Why They're Running Again This Year (PHOTOS)

Kiri Blakeley | Apr 18, 2014 Good News
12 Boston Marathon Survivors on Why They're Running Again This Year (PHOTOS)

Boston MarathonLast year, the country was shocked and horrified when two bombs went off at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Terrorism was the culprit. Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, 20, remains in custody. His brother, Tamerlan, was killed in a shootout with authorities. Three people were killed and hundreds were injured. Many lost limbs. Since then, the victims and their families and the community and country at large have spent time trying to heal. Things will never be the same at the Boston Marathon again, but plenty of people are determined not to let the evil forces of terrorism win. Here are 12 stories of those determined to run again this year.

Image via Bob Jagendorf/Flickr

  • Terrorism Won't Take My Joy


    Image via Linda Ambard

    Linda Ambard, Acton, MA. [Linda's husband, Air Force Major Philip Ambard, died in 2011 in Afghanistan.] Running the Boston Marathon means facing my fears and leaping into my future. Terrorism has already taken too much from me; I simply cannot let them take the first place I found joy after terrorism took my husband. I will be running to take back the finish line and my life.

  • Because Bad People Can't Stop Us


    Image via Kara Zech Thelan

    Kara Zech Thelan, Lansing, MI. I don’t want my kids to think for a minute that I’m not returning because I’m scared. Or because I wouldn’t be safe. Or because bad people can stop us from doing what we love. I want them to learn from my example to face their fears, be brave, try again, trust, forgive -- and join others to cultivate healing and peace.

  • 'Come Back to Boston'


    Image via Kathy Johnson

    Kathy Johnson, San Anselmo, CA. Last year, I was half a mile from the finish of the Boston Marathon when the bombs went off ... At the airport the next morning, police and FB agents stopped anyone with a Boston Marathon jacket to see if we had any information that might help identify the bombers. I was stopped several times, and each time, the detective would conclude -- "I hope you come back to Boston." I thought it was a curious thing to say right after the explosions, but I also found it gave me hope and optimism.

  • Not Running Is Not an Option


    Image via Robert Siciliano

    Robert Siciliano, Boston. Last year I was stopped at the 26th mile between the two bombs. The finish line was only 0.2 miles in front of me. Not running is not an option.

  • Because We're Like Family


    Image via Stonyfield.com

    Elizabeth Lynch, West Hartford, CT. The 2013 race was not my first marathon, but it was my first Boston Marathon ... The entire race I felt like I was running through my hometown. Everyone was so excited to see me run by and they didn't even know me. That is what I love most about marathons. For one day, for 30 seconds when I run by a stranger, they cheer for me like I am their sister or cousin.

  • For My Brother & Daughters


    Image via Stonyfield.com

    Sally Duval, Greenwich, CT. I want to be an official runner this year to honor my brother [who died on 9/11], the Boston Marathon bombing victims, and the city of Boston. I want everyone to know I am a proud runner who will not let terrorism or fear deter the American spirit. I believe in setting a good example for my three young daughters to be healthy by demonstrating what I eat and how I train and exercise regularly. I also want them to know that we will be strong in the face of violence and not shy away from the values and traditions that are important to us.

  • Even More Family This Year


    Image via Stephen Souza, Jr.

    Stephen Souza, Jr., Boston. The spirit of the marathon is to keep going. The three members of our family who ran last year didn't get to finish. They will return, with three additional members of the Souza family, to finish what they started. We support each other, no matter what. That's Boston strong.

  • Taking Back the Race


    Image via Trenni Kusnierek

    Trenni Kusnierek, Boston. There are dozens of reasons I was determined to run the Boston Marathon again, but the two biggest motives are to honor the victims, survivors, and the city as well as taking back the sport and race I love.

  • To Right the Wrong


    Image via David Green

    David Green, Jacksonville, Florida. [Last year, David, the CEO of 110% Compression, became famous for inadvertently snapping a photo of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev after he set off the bombs.] We overcome setbacks, seek out challenges, and ultimately triumph when we want something so badly. We need to right the wrong and make something out of it that will never be forgotten in a positive way. This will be the biggest, most important triumph for running and the Boston community -- I wouldn’t miss being a part of it.

  • Standing Up Against Hatred


    Image via Terry Carella

    Terry Carella, Lansing, MI. Coming back to run in this year's Boston Marathon is my way of showing my resolve to stand up against the forces of hatred and evil, and to celebrate the strength and kind spirit of runners and the people of Boston.

  • Performance Doesn't Matter


    Image via Slade Casey

    Slade Casey, Marietta, Georgia. I am blessed to have qualified at a time when remembrance, sadness, and celebration will dominate the emotions of the day. No matter how I perform, it will be a special day to be a participant.

  • For a Good Cause


    Image via Kennedy Elsey

    Kennedy Elsey, cohost of Karson & Kennedy in the Morning, Boston. This is my third year running for Boston Children's Hospital, and this year, I'm crossing the finish line. Period. I don't care how long it takes, it's going to happen. I'm doing it for Children's ... and I'm doing it for my city. It's going to be an incredible Boston Marathon, and I'm so honored to be running it again. And this year, I've given myself a huge goal of raising $10,401.

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