Just a couple of metres before the One Run for Boston finish line on Boylston Street, 45-year-old Rosa Evora crumpled to the ground, overcome with emotion, before other runners lifted her up and helped her across the line. The Brockton, Massachusetts runner was the last member of an American cross-country relay that began in Los Angeles on June 7 and finished at the iconic Boston Marathon finish line on Monday morning.
The charity event, launched by three British friends, involved more than 2,000 runners. So far, pledges have topped $80,000 for One Fund Boston to benefit those affected by the April 15 bombings that killed three people and injured more than 260.
Hundreds of Canadians took part in the 2013 Boston Marathon, and many were very close to the explosions, including Toronto’s Lynn Kobayashi, who finished just minutes before the first bomb detonated.
“I think I will always ask myself why we were not able to make out that the screams of encouragement from two blocks away had turned to screams of anguish, pain and terror,” Kobayashi wrote in her blog days after the event.
“One Run for Boston is a chance for runners to come together and show solidarity in a really dynamic way,” said event co-organizer Kate Treleaven. “It’s a chance to be part of something remarkable, to demonstrate the strength of human spirit and send a powerful message of support to the city of Boston and those whose lives were changed on April 15.” That was certainly the case when Evora crossed the line in the arms of other runners. Donations can still be made at onerunforboston.org.