Ellis Andrews had no fear in returning to the Boston Marathon, which was held on April 22, a year after the tragic bombings.
Andrews said Boston wanted to show the world that they will stand up to the people responsible for what happened.
“You saw Boston Strong shirts everywhere,” said Andrews in an email. “There was such a demand to get into Boston this year to show support from the running community and volunteers that they added 9,000 extra spots, 36,000 from 27,000 last year.
Organizers held a one-mile walk for the survivors, family and friends on Saturday and Andrew said it was very emotional.
“The blast victims walked, some with crutches others in wheelchairs and finished the walk under the Boston finishing line banner,” he wrote.
At a church near the finish line, people handed out more than 7,500 knitted blue and yellow scarves to the runners.
It was the fourth Boston Marathon for Andrews and he hadn’t seen so many people along the 26.2 mile course as there were this year.
“Certainly 100’s of thousands and the cheers were so loud it was deafening a lot of the times.”
To ensure safety, security was heightened with more law enforcement. Runners were not allowed to take any bags to the start.
While running the course, Andrews said he felt energy from the crowd.
“This time was beyond anything one could imagine and I don’t think any marathon will ever experience what took place on Monday in Boston,” he said. “People from all over North America and I suppose all over the world just came to volunteer and be part of the celebration of Boston Strong.”