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O.C. runner feels 'lucky' she finished Boston Marathon before blast

April 15, 2013|By Steve Virgen

Melissa Mead ran in the Boston Marathon for the first time Monday. She will remember it more now because of the explosions near the finish line.

Mead was among at least 35 runners from the Newport-Mesa area who ran in one of the world's oldest and most prestigious footraces. Mead, of Costa Mesa, is a Newport Harbor High School and UC Irvine alumna.

The 23-year-old finished the race in about 3 hours, 49 minutes, some 20 minutes before an explosion went off near the finish line, the Daily Pilot reported.

"It makes me feel quite lucky" to have avoided the devastation, Mead said in a text message.

"Glad to have finished up before all the chaos. It's so devastating to have something like this happen at such a beloved event."

Mead said she received multiple texts and phone calls checking in on her status.

When a bomb went off, "I was actually walking back to the hotel with my mom and sister," Mead said. "We heard the booms from behind us but did not think it was anything at the time. It was insanely loud, though."

Jim and Mollie Rosing of Newport Beach said they were fine after the explosions. The husband and wife graduated from Corona del Mar High School in 1993. They were in their hotel room when contacted by phone, but did not have much time to talk as they were receiving multiple calls checking in on them.

"It's crazy," Mollie Rosing said. "It's right down the street."

Bill Sumner, director of the Cal Coast Track Club, said at least 25 people from his club ran in the Boston Marathon. About 1 p.m. he said that the people he had contacted are fine. He continues to try to reach more runners.

He said Newport Beach resident Jennifer Buckley was in her hotel room with a few other runners and had to stay there because the hotel was in lockdown.


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