I have so many happy memories of Boston Marathons past: runners from around the world and thousands upon thousands lining the race course in celebration, through cold rain or muggy sun, brimming with soul and grit, and kindness. It is a race full of kindness. It is hard to get a bib for Boston. To qualify, you have to be a very good amatuer runner, or an elite runner. The remaining runners--many, many, many people--get their bibs by running for charity, after personally raising thousands or tens of thousands of dollars. When I've stood on that racecourse in the past, it's brought tears to my eyes to see spectators, deep and thick, out on Heartbreak Hill or around Cleveland Circle, miles from the finish line, calling out names from runners' bibs, cheering on unknown strangers as though they were best friends on the cusp of the actual finish line. The energy is special. There is no other marathon like Boston.
As a New England native, I've had countless friends, family members, and acquaintances run Boston, some every year. It is shameful that someone has tried to mar this event, this day, the accomplishments of 27,000+ people. You know what, though? Boston is tough and resilient. Today we mourn, we pray for the injured and their loved ones, we weep for a little more innocence lost. Tomorrow, we will stiffen our backbones, strengthen our resolve, and start to rebuild. We will come together, we will rise up, we will overcome. That's what we do.