More than 300 runners from North Texas were competing in the Boston Marathon Monday when two piercing booms went off near the finish line.
"My first thought was: 'That sounds different than anything I’ve ever heard before,'" said Dallas runner Samuel Polak.
"I actually looked up to see if there were any aircraft," said Kathy Metzger of Mansfield, who was watching her husband, Curt, compete.
“I did see something flying; I don’t know if it was a limb, but it was definitely an injury," added Elise Saab, who is from North Texas, but who lives just a few blocks from the Boston Marathon finish line.
The participants from the D-FW area describe how the marathon immediately turned into a sprint for survival.
Runner Nancy Adams Chapman told us, " "They started pushing us back, just trying to get us on the sidewalk so they could clear the road," Said runner Nancy Adams Chapman. "They kept saying, 'Stay away from the barrels! Stay away from the barrels!"
As they caught their breath, local runners began to get wind of what had happened.
"Your mind initially doesn't want to believe something like that being in an American city," said Chris Blackman of Dallas. "To watch the replay of this is just terrible. I am so mad, I can't see straight."
"After I walked away, I just started crying. It makes me angry... it’s such a violation," Chapman told us.
But she explains this was also a time to be thankful, because — exhausted at the end of the 26.2-mile race — her run turned into a walk, and mere moments later the blast went off right in front of her.
"And really, I would have been right there. I am so thankful," Chapman said. "Sometimes you just feel like, 'Who was looking out for me today?'"