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2013 Boston Marathon bombing motivates local runners

Published On: Apr 08 2014 08:15:39 PM CDT   Updated On: Apr 08 2014 10:45:19 PM CDT

70 southern Colorado runners this year compared to 46 last year.


The 2013 terrorist bombings at the Boston Marathon apparently aren't discouraging runners from the Colorado Springs area from registering.

Seventy people from southern Colorado have signed up to participate in the 118th running of the Boston Marathon on April 21.  Forty-six people from the area participated in the event last year.

Among the 2014 runners is Garry Harrington, 54, of Colorado Springs.  Harrington attended the race as a spectator last year.  He was watching a friend run and was at the finish line just minutes before the bombs, which killed three people and hurt more than 260 others, exploded.

"It was very discouraging as a runner to see something like that happen at a race," Harrington said.  "I know there probably are bigger targets out there than the Boston Marathon.  But this one really hit home to the community that I'm a part of."

Harrington said by running in this year's race, he's honoring the victims and sending a message that he won't live in fear.

"I'm just going to go and enjoy the moment," he said.  "I think it's going to be a very historic event for all the runners there.  Runners are pretty resilient folks.  They're very determined.  Many months of training went into every marathoner's trip to Boston.  And to have what happened last year occur at their race, didn't sit well with a lot of runners, I know that."

Harrington grew up in the New England area but didn't run in the marathon until 2011.  He said he wasn't going run again until the bombings happened.

"I felt compelled to be part of the marathon this year," he said.

Because so many runners were unable to finish the race after the bombings last year, the event has increased registration from 27,000 runners to 36,000.


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