As school starts again and students return to their campuses, Our Marathon is reflecting on the power of support found in University communities.
Be safe and good luck with the start of a new school year! 

As school starts again and students return to their campuses, Our Marathon is reflecting on the power of support found in University communities.

Be safe and good luck with the start of a new school year! 


Letter from a Leander Independent School District student, “Thank you for helping the people who got hurt at the incedent [sic] in Boston at the JFK Library the Marathon race and the Feterlizer [sic] factory.”

April 2013 was a month marked by tragedy in and out of Boston. This student’s note to police officers demonstrates how chaotic the news cycle was for young children to understand and follow. 

Letter from a Leander Independent School District student, “Thank you for helping the people who got hurt at the incedent [sic] in Boston at the JFK Library the Marathon race and the Feterlizer [sic] factory.”

April 2013 was a month marked by tragedy in and out of Boston. This student’s note to police officers demonstrates how chaotic the news cycle was for young children to understand and follow. 


I took this image at 2:19pm April 15th 2013, 30 minutes before the 1st bomb exploded just behind me at the Marathon Sports store.
I was standing much closer to the explosion’s site earlier, but a craving for some ice cream on that beautiful day (that’s how it started out) made me go inside Sugar Heaven. I think that saved me from more serious injuries; when I got outside again eating my ice-cream, I was just slightly further away and never went all the way back into the crowd in front of Marathon Sport again, placing me a bit further from the bomb when it went off. I don’t remember the blast. I do remember the heat, the smell, the panic, my ears ringing… the blood…


I wanted to post this picture to show what beautiful day it was, just before….

Do you have photos from the 2013 Boston Marathon? Share them here.

I took this image at 2:19pm April 15th 2013, 30 minutes before the 1st bomb exploded just behind me at the Marathon Sports store.

I was standing much closer to the explosion’s site earlier, but a craving for some ice cream on that beautiful day (that’s how it started out) made me go inside Sugar Heaven. I think that saved me from more serious injuries; when I got outside again eating my ice-cream, I was just slightly further away and never went all the way back into the crowd in front of Marathon Sport again, placing me a bit further from the bomb when it went off. 

I don’t remember the blast. I do remember the heat, the smell, the panic, my ears ringing… the blood…
I wanted to post this picture to show what beautiful day it was, just before….

Do you have photos from the 2013 Boston Marathon? Share them here.


Drawing from a child in Texas

View more drawings from the Letters to the City of Boston collection here. 

Drawing from a child in Texas

View more drawings from the Letters to the City of Boston collection here


The 2013 Boston Marathon was my first and only marathon, I ran and finished in a Boston qualifying time. Within minutes, the excitement from my accomplishments took a complete 180. My accomplishments really didn’t seem to matter anymore. Thankfully I was with friends and family at the time of the blasts. I also work at Marathon Sports the running store, which was the site of the first bomb. For the past six months I have gone into work, and without fail, someone asks about the details of that day. I will never forget April 15th 2013, I will remember the both the good and the bad for the rest of my life. I have already signed up for the 2014 Boston Marathon and can not wait to run again!!

Share your story here. Remember there is no story too small!

The 2013 Boston Marathon was my first and only marathon, I ran and finished in a Boston qualifying time. Within minutes, the excitement from my accomplishments took a complete 180. My accomplishments really didn’t seem to matter anymore. Thankfully I was with friends and family at the time of the blasts. 

I also work at Marathon Sports the running store, which was the site of the first bomb. For the past six months I have gone into work, and without fail, someone asks about the details of that day. I will never forget April 15th 2013, I will remember the both the good and the bad for the rest of my life. I have already signed up for the 2014 Boston Marathon and can not wait to run again!!

Share your story here. Remember there is no story too small!


The Boston Marathon or as us Bostonians refer to it as Marathon Monday is always one of the biggest events in this historic city and let’s just say I picked a bad day to get my glasses fixed. The previous night a part of my glasses fell off and a small component broke off, so I woke up around mid-day to trek to Boylston Street where the Lensecrafters was and even though I didn’t initially plan to go down to watch the marathon in the first place, it was an added bonus. It took me about two hours to get from one side of the street to other as I had stopped occasionally to watch the runners, but also the streets were as packed as Times Square on New Years Eve. 
As I was leaving the lenscrafters, I was faced with the decision to go either right or left, one way back to navigate around the finish line or try my luck down the reverse way of the marathon. My decision turned out to save my life, because as I took a right and walked for some of ten seconds and suddenly I knew something was wrong when there was a shuddering blast and searing pain in my leg. I was 15 to 20 feet away from the first blast and I honestly don’t know how I didn’t get hurt any more being at that close of a proximity, but thankfully things worked out in my favor. Despite the pain in my leg I was going to go in and help anyone who I saw was injured in the area, but then the second blast went off while my back was still turned and not knowing how many more there could be I followed the crowd away from the area of the blasts.
I hobbled into a local Nike store and asked if they had a towel so I could apply pressure to my leg as I noticed I was bleeding quite a lot. From there a store worker who had medical experience took me to the side of the street and helped stop the bleeding and get supplies to help me out. The scariest part of this experience was realizing that my injury was in my upper right thigh, where the femoral artery is located so I waited on the side the street not knowing if I was going to meet the same fate as Redskins Safety Sean Taylor who received a similar injury a few years ago and passed away. From there I was taken by a bulk ATV to the triage center, where my information was recorded and my injuries were assessed and thankfully I found out the artery was not damaged, but there may still be shrapnel in my leg. I was taken to the hospital a dozen or so minutes later and if I had to guess, from blast to the ambulance ride, the time frame was probably 30 to 50 minutes; my journey was expedited as I was a class C victim so I was moved to make room for people in critical condition. I was taken to Saint Elizabeth’s hospital, which was daunting at first, but immediately I knew I was in good hands as everything was done in a professional and comprehensive manner.
First, the doctors noticed that there was no exit wound from the shrapnel, so they did an X-ray to see if there were any foreign objects still in my leg, which there was. Then the surgical consult was called and they cut the other side of my leg open to remove the shrapnel, which proved to be an inch long metal nail like object. After I was taken care of I was interviewed by Boston PD and Homeland security who asked me my version of the events and since I took photos of the marathon, my phone was taken to download the photos for evidence. 
I applaud Boston first responders for their fantastic job and for being so organized in such a situation of panic and chaos. Right away, phone services were shut down to prevent potential further remote detonation and police and medical personnel jumped into action. I could not count the number of volunteers who helped calm down people who were panicking and working to ease the level of discord. The reactions of people right at the moment of the blast and post-blast were of disbelief and shock and those immediately turned to horror and panic as everyone tried to ensure themselves and family members were ok. This is my story from that fateful day and it is something that I will always remember through my entire life, but I could not have preserved and gotten through such a chaotic and life-changing event without the amazing support system I have here at Northeastern University and back home. 

Share your story with Our Marathon here. 

The Boston Marathon or as us Bostonians refer to it as Marathon Monday is always one of the biggest events in this historic city and let’s just say I picked a bad day to get my glasses fixed. The previous night a part of my glasses fell off and a small component broke off, so I woke up around mid-day to trek to Boylston Street where the Lensecrafters was and even though I didn’t initially plan to go down to watch the marathon in the first place, it was an added bonus. It took me about two hours to get from one side of the street to other as I had stopped occasionally to watch the runners, but also the streets were as packed as Times Square on New Years Eve. 

As I was leaving the lenscrafters, I was faced with the decision to go either right or left, one way back to navigate around the finish line or try my luck down the reverse way of the marathon. My decision turned out to save my life, because as I took a right and walked for some of ten seconds and suddenly I knew something was wrong when there was a shuddering blast and searing pain in my leg. I was 15 to 20 feet away from the first blast and I honestly don’t know how I didn’t get hurt any more being at that close of a proximity, but thankfully things worked out in my favor. Despite the pain in my leg I was going to go in and help anyone who I saw was injured in the area, but then the second blast went off while my back was still turned and not knowing how many more there could be I followed the crowd away from the area of the blasts.

I hobbled into a local Nike store and asked if they had a towel so I could apply pressure to my leg as I noticed I was bleeding quite a lot. From there a store worker who had medical experience took me to the side of the street and helped stop the bleeding and get supplies to help me out. The scariest part of this experience was realizing that my injury was in my upper right thigh, where the femoral artery is located so I waited on the side the street not knowing if I was going to meet the same fate as Redskins Safety Sean Taylor who received a similar injury a few years ago and passed away. From there I was taken by a bulk ATV to the triage center, where my information was recorded and my injuries were assessed and thankfully I found out the artery was not damaged, but there may still be shrapnel in my leg. I was taken to the hospital a dozen or so minutes later and if I had to guess, from blast to the ambulance ride, the time frame was probably 30 to 50 minutes; my journey was expedited as I was a class C victim so I was moved to make room for people in critical condition. I was taken to Saint Elizabeth’s hospital, which was daunting at first, but immediately I knew I was in good hands as everything was done in a professional and comprehensive manner.

First, the doctors noticed that there was no exit wound from the shrapnel, so they did an X-ray to see if there were any foreign objects still in my leg, which there was. Then the surgical consult was called and they cut the other side of my leg open to remove the shrapnel, which proved to be an inch long metal nail like object. After I was taken care of I was interviewed by Boston PD and Homeland security who asked me my version of the events and since I took photos of the marathon, my phone was taken to download the photos for evidence. 

I applaud Boston first responders for their fantastic job and for being so organized in such a situation of panic and chaos. Right away, phone services were shut down to prevent potential further remote detonation and police and medical personnel jumped into action. I could not count the number of volunteers who helped calm down people who were panicking and working to ease the level of discord. The reactions of people right at the moment of the blast and post-blast were of disbelief and shock and those immediately turned to horror and panic as everyone tried to ensure themselves and family members were ok. This is my story from that fateful day and it is something that I will always remember through my entire life, but I could not have preserved and gotten through such a chaotic and life-changing event without the amazing support system I have here at Northeastern University and back home. 

Share your story with Our Marathon here


I was there. I should write something. I was there at the start when the air was alive with energy and anticipation. I was there when runners who prepared for months nervously counted down to the start of the race. I was there when it was a perfect day for running 26.2 miles, fueled by the energy of the volunteers and spectators lining the route. I was there when it was uplifting and exhilarating. I was there when it was a fantastic day to run the 117th Boston Marathon. I was there when the bombs went off, a few minutes after I crossed the finish line, just a few dozen yards away. I was there when cheers of celebration and joy transformed into screams of pain and terror, as emergency personnel and volunteers protected only by their bright yellow jackets ran into the smoke and carnage as they simultaneously screamed for us to evacuate. I was there for nearly two hours, stumbling dazed around Boston as runners and family members desperately searched for each other, comforted each other, helped each other. And I was there when all but one of our friends made contact with her family, her glazed and wet eyes foretelling the unimaginable reality to come. I see the faces of those killed, their photos capturing random, happy moments from their short lives. I was there, in their final minutes. I wonder if they cheered for me, or caught my eye for just a moment. I try to understand why some of us are protected by guardian angels, while others are called to become angels. I question endlessly how an event to celebrate running could leave spectators without limbs. How an event to celebrate the human spirit could be a target for violence, hatred and death. I wonder how the historic Boston Marathon is now followed by the words “Bombing”, “Massacre” and “Tragedy”. I didn’t watch the unending hours of news. I didn’t have to. I was there, and replay that moment daily. My chest feels like it is being crushed by the combined weight of guilt, disgust, helplessness and sadness; so much sadness. I didn’t save newspapers about the event. I didn’t attend the remembrance, memorial service or group run I was invited to. I should have, but I didn’t. I couldn’t. Because I’m trying the best I can to be here, not there.But I was there, and I should write something. 

Did you run the 2013 Boston Marathon? the 2014 Boston Marathon? Share your story here. 
There is no story too small. 

I was there. 

I should write something. 

I was there at the start when the air was alive with energy and anticipation. I was there when runners who prepared for months nervously counted down to the start of the race. I was there when it was a perfect day for running 26.2 miles, fueled by the energy of the volunteers and spectators lining the route. I was there when it was uplifting and exhilarating. I was there when it was a fantastic day to run the 117th Boston Marathon. 

I was there when the bombs went off, a few minutes after I crossed the finish line, just a few dozen yards away. I was there when cheers of celebration and joy transformed into screams of pain and terror, as emergency personnel and volunteers protected only by their bright yellow jackets ran into the smoke and carnage as they simultaneously screamed for us to evacuate. 

I was there for nearly two hours, stumbling dazed around Boston as runners and family members desperately searched for each other, comforted each other, helped each other. And I was there when all but one of our friends made contact with her family, her glazed and wet eyes foretelling the unimaginable reality to come. 

I see the faces of those killed, their photos capturing random, happy moments from their short lives. I was there, in their final minutes. I wonder if they cheered for me, or caught my eye for just a moment. I try to understand why some of us are protected by guardian angels, while others are called to become angels. I question endlessly how an event to celebrate running could leave spectators without limbs. How an event to celebrate the human spirit could be a target for violence, hatred and death. I wonder how the historic Boston Marathon is now followed by the words “Bombing”, “Massacre” and “Tragedy”. 

I didn’t watch the unending hours of news. I didn’t have to. I was there, and replay that moment daily. My chest feels like it is being crushed by the combined weight of guilt, disgust, helplessness and sadness; so much sadness. 

I didn’t save newspapers about the event. I didn’t attend the remembrance, memorial service or group run I was invited to. I should have, but I didn’t. I couldn’t. 

Because I’m trying the best I can to be here, not there.

But I was there, and I should write something. 

Did you run the 2013 Boston Marathon? the 2014 Boston Marathon? Share your story here

There is no story too small. 


Free hugs! Not just for runners!

Do you have photos from the One Run? Services held to honor the victims and survivors of the bombings? Share them here. 
No story is too small.

Free hugs! Not just for runners!

Do you have photos from the One Run? Services held to honor the victims and survivors of the bombings? Share them here

No story is too small.


Peace Here and Everywhere

View more messages of support here. 

Peace Here and Everywhere

View more messages of support here


"Dear Doctors, Thank you for helping people who are ill or who got injured . We really appreciate your helpfulness. I think you have a great and important job. Everyday [sic] you help make people stay healthy and safe. Thank you again for all the hard word [sic] you do!Sencerely, [sic]Hazelomoto in third grade

Share your story here. 

"Dear Doctors, 

Thank you for helping people who are ill or who got injured . We really appreciate your helpfulness. I think you have a great and important job. Everyday [sic] you help make people stay healthy and safe. Thank you again for all the hard word [sic] you do!

Sencerely, [sic]
Hazelomoto in third grade

Share your story here