Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Community

The events at yesterday’s Boston Marathon were shocking and many unanswered questions were asked - who on earth would plan an attack like that and why?

I was at work and was passing through the waiting room when images on the television flipped from a normal news cast to smoke at the Boston Marathon finish line. My first thought flew to Ken, a guy from my running group that I had been tracking all morning. Was he ok? Had he crossed the finish line?  Yet again, more unanswered questions. Ken crossed the 40K split at a pace that would have placed him near the finish line around 4:10. We found out later that he was a mere 50 yards from the first explosion. Thankfully, he’s safe.

Another running group friend posted on her Facebook that she crossed the finish line at 4:06 – the hills of Boston slowed her down, but as the course led her into the city, she picked up her pace. She thanked God for saving her life.

If you are a runner, chances are you knew someone who was running Boston – a personal friend, a friend of a friend, a family member, a blogger friend, or a social media friend – as a running community, we were all affected by this horrible event.

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Runners have a special bond and are a part of a wonderfully supportive community. We are family and what hurts one hurts another.

Monday afternoon, I decided to join my running group for our weekly track workout. I’ve missed track workouts this season for one reason or another, but after the events that occurred Monday afternoon, I knew I needed to go…I needed to be around those who understood and felt the same emotions I felt.

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THIS is my community and my support system. We are a group, a team – we support each other and encourage each other through good times and bad. I was glad to be around them yesterday afternoon and I left with a less heavy heart.

YOU guys are also my community and my support system. Even though I’ve never met many of you in person, I feel as if I personally know a lot of you. I appreciate the support you’ve given me through my running journey, injuries, and accomplishments. I know you have my back, just like I have yours.

Today, I am taking part in Run Junkees online virtual event to honor the victims as well as display an act of unity and solidarity in the running community.  This race involves any distance, any way you want to cover it (running or walking). This was an event dreamed up by fellow Runners and you are welcome to invite anyone to join, just follow this link.  I also plan to wear a race shirt today, even if it’s under my scrubs for part of the day.

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We can’t let an event like this stop us. We have to keep praying for the victims and the families of this terrible tragedy and keep moving forward. We cannot let what was meant to harm stop us from doing good.
I like the way Kyle Garlett put things into perspective:

“We live in a world with evil. What happened today in Boston reminds us of that, as we are reminded each and every time someone sets out to senselessly kill innocents.
But we do not live in an evil world. The numbers of people who were on hand to lift up and care for the victims of this act swallow up the tiny fraction of individuals who would dream up such an attack. First responders rushed into a still dangerous situation to give aid and comfort. Runners, just finished with 26.2 miles, continued on to area hospitals to donate needed blood. And millions across the country are wishing, like I am, that there was something we too could do to help.

That is the world we live in. A world in which the overwhelming good of humanity always rises to the top in times of trial. When Evil challenges Good, Good always prevails. It did in Oklahoma City. It did in lower Manhattan, Washington, D.C., and in the skies over Pennsylvania. It did in London and Madrid. And it has so again today in Boston.

That is the world we live in.”


It’s not an easy feat to qualify for Boston. I admire each and every runner who is fast enough to run the race. For some, the road to Boston is easy – but for most, the road to Boston is led with many years of training, tears, and heartache. To rip one of the most victorious days of a runners life away from them is incredibly heartless and cruel. I hope they find who committed this awful act and bring them to justice.

It’s time for the running community to join together like never before. We are runners and we will not stop sharing our love for this great sport.

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14 comments:

  1. when things like this happen they seem so unreal. Glad your running group friends were safe!

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    1. Yes I agree...very unreal. Thanks...I was so glad, too!

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  2. If I didn't have to be at work at 7:30 this morning I would have gone to my local running store to run the Mile of Silence..will be doing something tonight

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    1. I love that your running store hosted this.

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  3. Great post Karen! All I know to do is pray. And run.

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    1. You're right...that's all we can do. So sad. :0(

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  4. I can't imagine. I never thought it would happen, it hadn't crossed my mind that something this horrific could be targeted at such a peaceful group. We run. We take over the streets for a morning in towns across the country and the world. It is hard to wrap my mind around.

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    1. I agree...this whole thing is mind boggling. :0(

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  5. So well said. I love my running community - both "real" and "virtual." We will get through this together and come out stronger on the other side!

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  6. Very well said!! It is still so surreal and hard to believe this happened. But it is amazing to see the bonded we are as a community and how we will emerge from this.

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  7. Well said Karen. Glad you were able to spend some time with your running group yesterday.

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    1. Thanks Suz! It was great being with them and having their support...

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