GREENSBORO, N.C.– Marathon runners returned home to the Triad on Tuesday, with Boston on their minds, and heavy in their hearts.
Reid Bolinger is from Greensboro and was running the Boston Marathon for the first time.
“They are very passionate about that race and they should be. It’s the greatest marathon in the world,” explains Bolinger.
Bolinger was about mile away from the finish line when he heard the explosions.
“I had no doubt in my mind. I’m going to the finish line.10 more minutes. That’s when it all stopped.”
Another runner told Bolinger about the two bombs that went off.
“Somebody turned around and said, ‘They’ve canceled the race there was an explosion at the finish line’ and I knew my wife was at the finish line. After running 25 miles and hearing that news I was just devastated,” he said.
Bolinger’s wife was sitting in the stands at the finish line, just feet away from the explosions.
“She saw a lot of smoke, saw the flash heard the boom and at that point she knew this was not a good situation,” Bolinger explained.
He tried to get near the stands to try to find his wife, but the chaos was too much; frantic runners, police officers, and SWAT teams were all over.
“I was just praying that she was okay,” said Bolinger.
Cell service was sporadic and he wasn’t able to find her for a while, until a kind stranger found him.
“She invited me into her house and I checked Facebook and let everybody know I was okay, and I finally got news my wife was okay and then we ended up meeting up at the hotel.”
More than 24 hours later, Bolinger is still in disbelief.
“I just can’t help but feel bad for all the people and feel bad for the city,” he said.
Bolinger was running to help raise money for a local non-profit called Red Dog Farm. He raised about $6,000 in total.
If given another chance he said he would definitely run the Boston Marathon again.