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SETX runner remembers Boston Marathon bombing
ORANGE - by Lauren Huet
The Boston Marathon bombing is on one Orange County runner's mind. Amanda Britnell ran in last year's Boston Marathon. She finished the race shortly before the first bomb went off. Britnell finished last year's race, got sick, and was taken to the medical tent for low blood sugar. Thirty minutes later, the first bomb went off.
"I heard the first bomb go off and then maybe ten seconds later I heard the second bomb go off," said Britnell. "And I asked the nurse, 'what was that?' because it was really loud, it sounded like a cannon."
The first bomb exploded near the finish line, where her husband had been standing when she finished the race.
"But you can get text messages sent to your phone where you know when your runner has finished," said Britnell. "So, he knew I was done, he knew I was finished, and then he walked on and kept walking on. So, if he hadn't have gotten that text message, he might have still been there."
However, she didn't know where he was, and cell phone service had been turned off to prevent perhaps another explosive from being detonated.
"Nobody's phones were working and I was trying to borrow other peoples' phones because I didn't have a phone because I'd just got done running," said Britnell.
Finally, she got a hold of him.
"I texted my husband, and that got through, and I knew that he was okay," said Britnell. "We met back at the hotel and just hugged and were so happy to see each other again, and know that he was okay."
Britnell says the happy ending for her family might have taken a different turn if she hadn't decided to run to the finish line. A scripture given to her by her sister and dad helped her push through.
"For those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not be faint," said Britnell.
So she pushed on instead of taking it easy.
"I was just going to walk in the last 3 miles and if I would have done that my time would have been a lot slower, and I would have been right there when the bomb went off, and my husband would have still been there," said Britnell.
Britnell's heart goes out to those who lost loved ones, and those who were injured.
"I realized how close that could have been my husband and I just hate that," said Britnell. "Especially the ones that lost their family."
Thousands gathered at the site of the bombing Tuesday to remember the victims with a moment of silence. This year's Boston Marathon is Monday, April 21st.