Church bells tolled on Wednesday, April 15th at 2:49 p.m., the time that the first bomb went off at the Boston Marathon finish line two years ago.
Mayor Marty Walsh has declared April 15th “One Boston Day,” a day to show kindness and generosity to honor the victims. Three people died and more than 260 others were injured.
This year’s Boston Marathon is on Monday and News Channel 6 caught up with two local men who are running it. One has faced some challenges getting to the starting line this year and another was in Boston on the day of the bombing two years ago.
“I just kept running, I would run really, really slow, I lowered the speed,” said Richard Nasser.
Nasser describing his first run after his life was almost taken last April.
“I was going down Washington Road and a car pulled out in front of me within five feet and I am going 27 miles an hour, so I couldn’t hit the brakes because I would flip over, I couldn’t swerve because there were cars in traffic, so I just had to take the impact,” said Nasser.
He was riding his bike, training for multiple competitions, when the crash happened.
“My spleen burst, so I lost a lot of blood, they thought I was going to die on the scene, and then the left side of my face actually exploded, so my eye fell into my skull, broke my jaw in four places,” said Nasser.
Nasser, who qualified for the Boston Marathon in 2014, had two brain injuries and a stroke in the hospital. He had to learn how to get back to where he once was, a top winning athlete.
“I really want to use my testament to running the Boston Marathon just a year after this accident to really bring awareness to the traumatic brain injury because it’s a wound that you can’t see and not a lot of people really understand that,” said Nasser.
While he recovered in the hospital during the Boston Marathon last year, Doctor Michael Rogers was running it.
It was the first time he’d been back to the place where the horrific bombing happened.
“Well, I had just crossed the finish line and had gotten my medal and water and I heard a large explosion behind me,” said Rogers.
Rogers thought it might have been a sewer explosion until he heard the second bomb.
“My biggest fear was that my wife was standing there watching me and she could have been in the crowd where the bomb went off,” said Rogers.
He reunited with his wife that day and since then the almost 70-year-old has continued to go back to Boston as he’s done since 2001.
“Boston is always an exciting time because there are so many people there and it’s just an event that comes to the forefront, that comes to my forefront every year,” said Rogers.
The surviving bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was found guilty on all 30 counts he faced last week. His sentencing begins on April 21st.