The strategic choice of location for the Boston Marathon bombs was not lost on many. Leaving explosives anywhere is monstrous; leaving them in the midst of a crowd brimming with joy and celebration adds another layer of cruelty that is just impossible to fathom.
The devastation of April 15 has struck everyone in different ways. For runners, it delivered a sharp blow to a sense of spirit and community that runs deep in the sport. Although technically a competition, for many runners, marathons are more of a collaborative event – a place where people stop to help fellow runners with a cramp, share water bottles, high-five strangers, run in memory of a loved one, and more often than not, run to raise money for charity.
To hear that runners in Boston crossed the finish line after the explosions and continued running straight to Mass General Hospital to donate blood came as little surprise to those familiar with the running community.
And thus, it was only a matter of time before running events starting taking shape as way to reclaim ownership of the kindness and community that runners hold dear. In the same spirit that brought hundreds of canceled New York City Marathon runners to storm-devastated Staten Island to run backpacks full of supplies to hard-hit areas, a grassroots effort for the upcoming weekend is calling on runners to “Run for Boston.”
Armed with a Facebook page and a hashtag (#RunForBoston), nearly 1,000 runners have already committed to local runs in states across the country to “run in solidarity with the Boston marathon runners and spectators who were injured or killed.” There are no charitable donation requirements to attend any of the runs, but runners are being urged to donate to The One Fund Boston, which was formed by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Tom Menino to help the people most affected by the bombing.
Runs will be held this Saturday, April 15. If you want to join a run, or start a run of your own, visit the We Run for Boston page.
"If you're trying to defeat the human spirit, marathon runners are the wrong group to target." -David & Kelvin Bright #runforboston— Real Runners (@RunningQuotes) April 16, 2013