Boston Marathon bombings: The moment everything changed

April 23, 2013

( NBC via Reuters)

One by one, the stories are emerging. Some ran in the marathon, some were there to cheer or work. Some were injured, some were not.

Using the photo above, the New York Times took a first step toward recording the impressions of those shown in a photo taken when the official race clocked showed “4:09:43,” the moment at which everything changed at the finish line of the Boston Marathon on April 15.

Debi Caprio, a Rockland, Mass., nurse and triathlete is the runner in red, behind the runner in orange, just to the left of the first “4″ in the clock. She told the Times: “I said out loud, ‘This is how my life is going to end.’”

The New Yorker caught up with another runner, Brendan Morrissey. After finishing in 3 hours, 44 minutes, he was waiting for friends at the finish line.

The people working the event asked Brendan to move down the street to make room for incoming runners. “They moved me down, farther and farther,” Brendan said, perhaps one or two hundred feet. “Ten minutes later, I saw one of my friends crossing the finish line. Then the bombs went off.” Brendan considers himself lucky: had he not been moved, he thinks, he might have been caught in the blast. (His friend, who was running on the far side of Boylston Street, felt the explosion, but was uninjured.) The fear, Brendan said, didn’t set in until after the second explosion. “I could see it in people’s faces,” he said. “They were saying, ‘This is a bomb, this is a bomb, this is a terrorist attack. Don’t go to your hotel, don’t go to Newbury Street.’ I was scared for my life. I didn’t know where to go. I didn’t know if I was walking toward or away from a bomb.”

Brendan wasn’t the only member of his family with a near-miss. though. A few days later, one of the bombers was found hiding in a boat — in the yard next to Brendan’s brother’s house.

Follow @CindyBoren on Twitter and on Facebook.

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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Cindy Boren · April 23, 2013