Before chaos ensued, Karin Sheehy of Elgin recalled that the 2013 Boston Marathon was a beautiful day, perfect for running.
“I was very pleased with my best Boston finish yet,” she said. “After the explosions, I remember how, for all the chaos that was going on, it was eerily quiet. Just blocks from the finish line on a normally celebratory day, all you could hear was a constant chorus of sirens.”
Despite what happened in Boston, two weeks after the marathon, Sheehy ran a large race in Chicago — without hesitation.
“Runners are a resilient, strong-minded and bodied lot. Nothing deters us,” she said.
So Monday’s race will be her fourth Boston Marathon and tenth marathon run in the last six-and-a-half years.
As for why she’s headed East once more — with her mother and husband for support — Sheehy said, “Because it’s Boston and they have great beer. Seriously, though, even before the events of last year, I thoroughly loved running this marathon and take great pride in having run fast enough to qualify for this race. Being the world’s oldest marathon there is such prestige and tradition there.”
This year, there also are new and extra precautions being taken. Sheehy mentioned that runners are extremely limited now as to what they are allowed to bring on the bus to the starting line in Hopkinton, as well as the size of the items they bring. Runners also are not allowed to check their gear at the starting line as they have in the past.
“They have increased police security as well as added many cameras along the course,” she said. However, as I mentioned before, runners are resilient, it will all be fine! Just as flying was right after the September 11th attacks — I was a United flight attendant when that occurred — the Boston Marathon course will be the safest place on Earth Monday.”
As for what makes the effort worth it, Sheehy said, “From the locals who volunteer and line the streets to cheer, to all the runners and the elite athletes who covet the laurel wreath placed on the winners head, it is a crowd and atmosphere like no other,” Sheehy added.
“I wanted so much to race again this year because I feel there is a celebration to be had that we were denied last year and I simply just love this race and this place.”
“The runners high is a real thing, and I enjoy the ride,” Sheehy said.
“After a couple days, when I’m home I usually decompress simply by going about my normal mommy duties, nothing in particular or special.”