Mid-Missouri Runners Tell of Marathon Explosion Aftermath

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BOSTON - A group of mid-Missouri runners told KOMU 8 News Monday they were unharmed after two bombs went off at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Six of the seven women in the group completed the race before the explosion. One of those runners, Quanna Hafer, had just finished the race when she said she knew something was wrong.

"I was walking away from the finish line, I am guessing, the finish line was a couple hundred yards behind me," said Hafer.

She said the police officers on the scene told her and others around her to keep moving. 

"I initially thought it was part of the race, I thought they were doing some type of cannon. But when everyone turned and saw massive black smoke, then there was another explosion pretty much immediately after that," said Hafer.

When Hafer made it back to her hotel, she informed the five others in her group of the news. Runner Haley Schwarz said the group initially worried about their friend Becky Bond who was still running the race.

"[Our hotel] is less than a mile from the finish, so immediately we turned on the news and we got a text from our friend [Bond]," said Schwarz

Bond started the marathon at 10 a.m. Monday morning. She said she expected to finish the race by two o'clock. 

"I was running literally like half a mile from the finish line like, 25.77 or something, and we started coming to an intersection and all these police officers started flying by going the way we were running," said Bond.

It was not long before the police would not let any runners go further in the race. 

"We have been stopped for I don't know, how long, 45 minutes. I don't have a time frame right now," said Bond.

Bond said her husband was waiting for her at the end of the finish line when the explosion occurred. She said she was able to contact her husband by text message, who reported he was unhurt.

Bond said the local community has been very supportive and taken action quickly.

"All the neighborhood people came out with water and trash bags to stay warm with," said Bond.

It may be difficult to reach loved ones in Boston but the Internet is helping make it easier. Google has created a "person finder" that allows anyone request of post information about someone's condition and whereabouts. And the Boston Marathon's website allows you to track athletes by name.

Full list of Columbia and other Mid-Missouri runners registered for the Boston Marathon on www.baa.org:

Anderson, Jennifer L
Bond, Becky
Castagno-Dysart, Dawn
Derose, Jordan
Doisy, Kathy M
Fernandez, Keith
Frazier, Shellaine
Frese, Dana L (Jefferson City)
Heaviland, Dan L
Hillard, Laura J.
Kennelly, Sean M.
Louie, John
Schwarz, Haley C.
Sievers, Anne
Smith, Clint (Fulton)
Tripp, Michael
Washington, William L.
Young, Darrin D