Hubbard Dr. Robert Gerdes was a block and a half away when the bombs went off on Monday while he was finishing the Boston Marathon.
“You really couldn’t tell. It could have been a large explosion or it could have been two big trucks crashing into each other,” said Gerdes.
Gerdes ran the marathon Monday, crossing the finish line about an hour before the two explosions rocked the area. He borrowed a phone and texted his wife, confident she was nowhere near the finish line. But he watched other families who were not so sure of their loved ones whereabouts.
Gerdes saw runners come in to the family waiting area, which would typically be a joyous occasion, but was now a memory marred with horror.
“I saw one guy finish about the time I was ready to leave. He finally finished, got back to his family in the meeting area. He was probably in his 40s. His wife and children were there. He broke down crying on the ground,” Gerdes said. “Usually at this family reunion area people are finishing the race, there’s people smiling, laughing, hugging and celebrating, and this time it was a lot of tears.”
Gerdes not only feels for the victims but also his fellow runners who never crossed the finish line. Even in the wake of the terror, Gerdes said the incident would not stop him from the running the Boston Marathon again.
“Sad for all the 27,000 runners who have dedicated a year to this and the day, and the day was ruined for them,” said Gerdes.