They finally got the finish they deserved – and for 39 marathon runners from Indiana and surrounding states – it was a day they won’t soon forget.
All 39 participants were at the Boston Marathon in April, but weren’t able to complete the race because of the bombings near the finish line that killed three people and injured dozens of spectators.
“It was the most incredible experience of my whole life,” said marathon runner Nancy Smith.
“This is such an honor,” said runner Amber Larason of Bloomington. “It’s amazing to be here. We didn’t get to hear the infamous crowds at the finish line (in Boston) but we get to hear these crowds today.”
Amber’s mother is grateful the two weren’t injured in Boston.
“My daughter was going to run way in front (of me) but stayed with me so,” Sharon Larason said. “We were thankful because she could have been in harm’s way, waiting for me to finish.”
Sunday they got to finish their race – in dramatic fashion.
“Just knowing that when we were running, all these people were cheering for us, it was incredible,” said Smith.
“It was awesome,” said runner Ron Kuczma. “I can’t believe we’re here.”
Runner Ronald Dubin waved an American flag as he ran down the straightaway at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
“It’s the best marathon finish I ever had,” said Dubin. “The Indy 500 is a great place. It represents America.”
“It was unbelievable,” said Smith. “How could we ask for a more spectacular finish?”