Californians hurt in Boston Marathon blasts, including boy

April 16, 2013|By Matt Pearce

At least two Californians were wounded in the Boston Marathon blasts that killed three and left more than 176 wounded, including a Redondo Beach man and a boy from Martinez.

Katherine Hern, of Martinez in Northern California, posted on Facebook on Monday night that her son Aaron was in intensive care with multiple cuts,  including a worrisome one on his left thigh that may keep him in the hospital for surgeries over the next seven to 10 days. His father said most of the blast hit him on the left side of his body.

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"Thank you all so much for your thoughts and prayers," Katherine Hern wrote. "Aaron is in the ICU but stable."

CNN reported Aaron's age as 11; KTVU-TV reported it as 12. KTVU said the boy was with his younger sister and father at the race; they were unhurt. Family friends told KTVU he was running to meet his mother after she'd finished when he was hit by one of the bombs.

"They're letting him sleep today," the boy's father, Alan Hern, told CNN on Tuesday. Aaron has been sedated but woke momentarily when hospital staff moved him.

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"When they moved him, he woke up, fluttered his eyes, squeezed our hands," Alan Hern said. “He knows we’re there. ... Maybe tomorrow sometime they’ll bring him out [of anaesthesia] so he can talk to us.”

Darrel Folkert, 42, of Redondo Beach, was watching his wife finish her seventh Boston Marathon when he was struck by the blast. He is expected to return to Los Angeles on Tuesday night, his wife, Jac Bost, 42, told the Los Angeles Times.

“We’re super grateful and super blessed and just kind of in shock, really," she said.

Folkert, who runs ultramarathons with his wife but wasn't running in the Boston race, was standing directly in front of the second blast as his wife was in the closing stretch of the race.

"I was less than a quarter mile away," she said. Bost had heard a boom, and organizers stopped her before the finish line. When word trickled back that there had been an explosion, the runners immediately tried to call loved ones, but found their phones weren't working.

Bost didn't have her phone, but in yet another account of the wide spirit of generosity that swept the city after the attack, someone lent her a phone.

The spirit touched her husband too: Two men had rushed to Folkert's aid on the sidewalk and carried him to a nearby grocery store where they called for help and lent her husband a phone, Bost said.

Bost still doesn't know their names, but hasn't stopped praising them.

“Those guys were just amazing," Bost said, adding, "I sent them a thank-you message today from my phone and exchanged text messages with them.

“The info share among people, family, friends, relatives and strangers, it was just phenomenal," Bost said. "Everyone in the city of Boston -- law enforcement, hospital -- everyone was absolutely phenomenal."


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