So. Fla. residents at Boston Marathon share personal accounts
BOSTON (WSVN) -- Three South Florida residents who attended the Boston Marathon Monday afternoon shared their personal accounts of the deadly blasts that claimed three lives and injured more than 130 people.
Davie resident Julie West, who had just finished the marathon, witnessed the second explosion firsthand from her hotel room. "I took a shower, and I was sitting in the bed, and there was a loud sound I'd never heard, the explosion, and I ran to the window, and I saw the second explosion go off," she said. "I assumed it was a bomb, and I was really scared."
West said the first bomb was located underneath the scaffolding that was holding up several flags from across the world. "As soon as the bombs went off, the cops were tearing apart the scaffolding to make sure there wasn't anything else underneath that," she said.
The witness described the chaos that ensued after the bombs detonated. "You could see the ground was covered in blood," she said. "The windows in the stores above where [the victims] were, were blown out."
Three miles before the finish line, Aventura resident Anita Reibel cheered her son on as he ran past. Her other son hopped the barricades for the final sprint as a family, missing the blasts by just minutes. "Eventually they stopped them a mile before finish, closed the course, told everyone to get off course," she said. "They were saying there could be more bombs along the whole course. They didn't know what was going on so they were telling people to leave area as quickly as possible."
Hollywood resident Patricia Soden frantically searched for her husband. "I was terrified because I knew my husband was somewhere waiting for me and I didn't know where he was," she said.
Soden burst into tears as she attempted to make her way through the mob of bystanders. "Out of nowhere everyone started running out of control ... bumping into each other," she said.
The witness said she was trapped while officials attempted to restore order at the scene. "They wouldn't let us out," Soden said. A Boston Marathon volunteer, however, came to her rescue. "I was crying so much a volunteer let me get out of there to get my composure," she said.
The last thing Soden heard before she was able to exit the marathon area was the police, who "said, 'This is really, really bad.'" She returned to her hotel, located one block away, where security locked all guests inside.
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