Alaska remembers the Boston Marathon


by Jessica Gruenling

ANCHORAGE, Ak--The Boston Marathon is an experience unlike any other, some say it's the mecca for serious marathon runners.

"The crowd support, and the support of the city itself, it's like no other marathon I've ever been around. It definitely helps you get to the finish," Tom Ritchie, Boston Marathon runner.

On marathon day the spirity of the city is unmatched. It's a holiday, Patriot's day, and a party.

 "The crowds are deafening at points you go into the hills there and it is just deafening," Monica Ross, Boston Marathon runner.  

But last year, just before 3 o'clock tragedy struck. These two Alaskan runners weren't in attendance, but they had friends that experienced it first hand.

"It went from the people that finished just the sense of joy of running the boston marathon to have it all of a sudden shattered in terror and worrying about loved ones," Ritchie.

"Our friend was actually out on the course when it happened and they just said hey you gotta stop somethings happened, so as a runner being that closed to have to turn around is devastating, not knowing why and then to find out, just so many emotions," Ross. 

As soon as the painful news broke, Monica said she instantly knew she was going back to Beantown.

"Just when I saw the first images come. I mean it wasn't even a thought it was just I said out loud I'm going. I'm going back to Boston," Ross. 

Monica and Tom a long with 54 other Alaskans will head to Boston in the next few days with more pride in their country than ever before.

"All year you've been hearing that saying "Boston Strong and so it's good to get back to show that the marathon is strong," Ritchie. 

"They're very proud Americans and to have the best marathon in the United States that being said I can't imagine what the crowds will be like this year and I don't think that they'll be any less," Ross. 

Crossing the finish line for any marathon runner is emotional, but this year will bring an extra sense of accomplishment.

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