Meridian Star

New Today

April 17, 2013

Eyewitness to blood, smoke and panic at Boston Marathon

Editor's note: Near simultaneous explosions at the Boston Marathon finish line yesterday killed 3 people and wounded scores more. Reporter Jill Harmacinski was there to help cover the race for The Eagle-Tribune in North Andover, Mass. The following is her first-person account of what happened.

BOSTON, Mass. -- We were looking for our friends, first-time marathon runners Christian Breen and John Brien, when we jarred by the first loud boom. Then we heard the second boom and saw white smoke mushrooming over the Boston Marathon finish line.

It sounded like cannons or guns going off. I went toward the explosion, as my friend, Lisa Driscoll, stepped back. We were 65 feet away - at the most - when two bombs went off at 2:50 p.m. yesterday at the marathon finish line. We had media passes and were inside the crowd-control fencing, standing right on Boylston Street.

Runners who had made it past the finish line turned around to see what was happening. Volunteers, security, police and paramedics all started running toward the smoke.

Medics started running out of a nearby medical tent with wheelchairs. Those people are trained to hydrate runners and massage exhausted muscles - not pick up dismembered bodies, Lisa later noted.

A medic pushing a wheelchair was sprinting away from the explosion site. In the wheelchair was a bloody runner who had half his leg missing.

Two other women covered in blood were also quickly pushed into the medical tent. A blood-covered man on a gurney was loaded into an ambulance.Another runner, a man wearing only black shorts, came calmly down Boylston Street. He was covered in blood splatter. People kept asking him if he was OK, but he just kept running.

Cruisers, ambulances and firetrucks started racing into the area. A runner ran up to police, saying he was trained in "mass casualty" incidents and telling them he knew what to do.

Text Only
New Today
Biz Marquee
New Today
Poll

Mississippi's unemployment rate rose to worst in the nation at 7.9 percent in June, as the state's economic recovery lags behind others. Gov. Phil Bryant, who has made economic development a central focus, acknowledged the poor figure but said Mississippi's economy has improved since he took office. Do you agree with Bryant's statement?

Yes
No
     View Results
Facebook
Facebook
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide