“I just wanted to get the heck out of Boston,” Shevlin said.
Shevlin said she wouldn’t let what is being investigated as a terrorist attack dissuade her from running another Boston Marathon. But she conceded that the air surrounding the hallowed event will always be filled with concern.
“I don’t think I’ll ever get rid of that sense of concern,” Shevlin said.
As Shevlin was being comforted, fellow Winner’s Circle member, Newburyport resident Michael McCormack, was watching events unfold from the nearby Lenox Hotel. McCormack had finished the race 45 minutes earlier and took a shower before hearing the bombs go off.
Walking downstairs to get a better idea what was happening, McCormack saw people being taken away on stretchers.
“I couldn’t believe it was happening,” said McCormack, who has completed 31 Boston Marathons. “It was crazy, it’s only sinking in today.”
Meanwhile, Mike Jones, the CEO of the Newburyport Institution for Savings, was in the car headed home after finishing the race when the two explosions went off.
“It became a very rough day after that,” said Jones, the father of four small children. “Honestly, my participation (in the marathon) became irrelevant, became meaningless. I was just so saddened by the events that took place, and then you have the ‘what ifs’ that run through your mind. If we had done something differently, a little differently, we could have been caught up in the whole thing. My heart breaks for those involved.”
What struck him, Jones said, was the way people in his hometown of Ipswich rallied together. His phone was ringing constantly Monday afternoon and evening.
“We had such an outpouring of people calling the house — that’s what’s so great about living in Ipswich,” said Jones. “ ... As of (Monday) night, I was so down, I said I’d never run (the marathon) again, but that certainly changed. I’m qualified to run for next year and I’ll absolutely run, for support more than anything else. By bowing out now, you’re letting the perpetrators know they’ve won.”
Reporter Bethany Bray contributed to this story.