Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 22nd 2014 Contents A61
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
BOSTON---Nearly 36,000 run-
ners set out from the Boston
Marathon starting line with secu-
rity tight along the 26.2-mile (42-
kilometre) course yesterday, in a
show of resilience a year after
the bombing that turned the race
into a scene of carnage.
To the delight of many in the
crowd, an American won the
men s division for the first time
in more than three decades, dom-
inating a field that included many
athletes who were prevented from
finishing last year. Eritrean-Amer-
ican Meb Keflizighi, a former New
York City Marathon champion and
Olympic medalist, won the men s
title in two hours, eight minutes,
37 seconds. Cheers rose up as word
of the first American man to win
in Boston since 1983 spread
through the pack of runners.
Keflizighi had the names of last
year s victims written in black
marker on the corners of his race
Last year, the two pressure-
cooker bombs that went off near
the finish line killed three people
and wounded more than 260 in
a hellish spectacle of torn limbs,
smoke and broken glass.
Police were deployed in force
along the route, with helicopters
circling above and bomb-sniffing
dogs checking through trash cans.
Officers were posted on roofs.
Boston Marathon race director
Dave McGillivray said it had been
a long and difficult year.
"We re taking back our race,"
he said. "We re taking back the
At 2.49 pm, the time the bombs
went off, spectators observed a
moment of silence at the finish
line. It was followed by some of
the loudest cheers of the day as
people whooped, clapped and rang
A total of 35,755 athletes were
registered to run---the second-
largest field in its history, with
many coming to show support for
the event and the city that was
traumatised by the attack on its
signature sporting event.
"I can t imagine the number of
emotions that are going to be
there," said Katie O Donnell, who
was stopped less than a mile from
the end last year. "I think I m going
to start crying at the starting line,
and I m not sure I ll stop until I
cross the finish line."
Buses bearing the message
"Boston Strong" dropped off run-
ners at the starting line in the town
of Hopkinton. A banner on one
building read: "You are Boston
Strong. You Earned This."
Among the signs lining the end
of the route was one paying tribute
to eight-year-old Martin Richard,
the youngest of those killed in the
"No more hurting people.
Peace," read the sign. A photograph
of Martin holding a poster he
made for school with those words
was published after his death.
"I showed up, I m back, and I
am going to finish what I didn t
finish last year," said Mary Cun-
ningham, 50, of St Petersburg,
Florida, who was stopped a mile
short of the finish line by the
explosions last year.
Sabrina Dello Russo, 38, of
South Boston, was running her
first marathon for a good friend,
Roseann Sdoia, who lost her right
leg in the bombing.
"She is my inspiration from day
one last year when I saw her in
the ICU. Every run I do, she is in
the back of my head, and she will
be keeping me going today," Dello
While Gov Deval Patrick said
there had been no specific threats
against the race or the city, spec-
tators at the 118th running of the
world s oldest annual marathon
had to go through tight check-
points before being allowed near
the starting and finish lines.
Fans hoping to watch near the
finish line were encouraged to leave
strollers and backpacks behind.
Police set up checkpoints along
the marathon route to examine
backpacks, particularly outside
subway station exits. And runners
had to use clear plastic bags for
More than 100 cameras were
installed along the route in Boston,
and race organisers said 50 or so
observation points would be set
up around the finish line to mon-
itor the crowd.
Among the spectators cheering
runners near the finish line was
Jeff Bauman, who lost his legs in
the bombing. It was the first time
he had returned to the area since
"It feels great" to be back, he
said. "I feel very safe."
Kenya s Rita Jeptoo won the
women s race in a course-record
two hours, 18 minutes, 57 seconds,
defending a championship from
She had been hoping this year
for a title she could enjoy.
"It was very difficult to be
happy. People were injured and
children died," she had said of last
year s marathon. "If I m going to
win again, I hope I can be happier
and to show people, like I was
supposed to last year."
On Twitter, President Barack
Obama congratulated Keflizighi
and Shalane Flanagan, the top
American finisher among the
women, "for making Americans
Other runners were expected to
remain on the course for several
hours after the winners crossed
the finish line. Last year, the
bombs went off at 2.49 pm, as
spectators crowded around the
finish the line to cheer the still-
arriving runners about five hours
into the race.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 20, is
awaiting trial in the April 15, 2013,
attack and could get the death
penalty. Prosecutors said he and
his older brother---ethnic
Chechens who came to the US
from Russia more than a decade
ago---carried out the attack in
retaliation for US wars in Muslim
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, died in
a shootout with police days after
Josphat Boit, left, and Meb Keflezighi, compete along the course of the 118th
Boston Marathon yesterday, en route to Boston. Keflezighi won the race.
Boston Marathon bombings survivors Adrianne Haslet-Davis, left, and
Jeff Bauman greet near the finish line of the 118th Boston Marathon,
yesterday. AP PHOTOS
...show of resilience a year after bombings
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