Vickie Cox, a Rye resident who ran her 11th Boston marathon today, described by phone how she had crossed the finish line less than 1 minute before the deadly explosion occurred.
“I was just beyond the finish line and suddenly heard this very loud boom, and we turned around and saw the smoke coming out from just on the other side of the finish line from where we were, and then a second one just about 10 seconds later,” she said.
“You’re emotional anyway because you feel exhausted, you feel elated, all of that,” the 58-year-old real estate agent said by telephone from a hotel in Cambridge. “But then to have something like that happen …. It’s just very, very scary.”
Her husband, Joseph, was looking for her after receiving a text that she had crossed the finish. “It sounded almost like an artillery shell or something crazy like that. It was not good. It was huge, and loud,” he said.
In the panic and chaos, he saw a boy with a badly injured leg and a woman bleeding from her face. Someone had taken off a jacket to wrap around the woman’s head as ambulances streamed past. He ran to the street to summon help before sprinting to search for his wife.
After trying to reach her by phone amid smoke and pandemonium, he finally received a text from Vickie and found her near the baggage buses.
They walked across the Massachusetts Avenue bridge from Boston to Cambridge, as it was closed to traffic, and saw police boats in the water below. “I swear we heard a third explosion,” Joseph Cox said.
“Thank God we’re OK. If she had finished maybe 30 seconds later, I don’t want to think what would have happened,” he said, his voice breaking. “The good Lord was watching out.”