Local News

About 700 North Carolinians race in Boston Marathon

Posted April 21

— Of the roughly 36,000 people who participated in the Boston Marathon on Monday, about 700 were from North Carolina. Some were in Boston for the first time, while others returned to take care of unfinished business.

For Richard Smith, a professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, it was about reclaiming the finish line.

“When this happened last year, everybody in the running community felt the same way. If you had some contact with the Boston Marathon, you wanted to come and run the Boston Marathon,” he said.

Barbie Dalton came from Raleigh to run as her husband and three kids cheered her on.

“To see the mementos and the posters and the pictures, it was more emotional than I thought it would be this year,” she said.

Security was high at the 118th running of the race. Snipers were stationed on the roof tops of buildings. Spectators could not get close to the finish line without credentials. Security guards checked bags and used hand-held metal detectors before clearance was granted. But safety concerns did not stop the runners.

“It just shows that the running community can’t be stopped, but neither can Boston,” said Smithfield resident Roger Wood, who ran with his son, Jonathan. “You know, I had to divert and high five the kids. That’s the next generation. We are hoping that they will be just as strong as we are.”

Former WRAL News anchor Kelcey Carlson says a medal wasn't her motivation for coming back to run the race.

“I felt like if I didn’t come back, I was giving in to that fear. We need to reclaims our security in some ways,” she said.

One year after tragedy, the race ended in triumph. An American man took home first place for the first time since 1983, and former UNC runner Shalane Flanagan was the first American woman to cross the finish line. She came in seventh among the women after leading for more than half the race.

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