‘Boston is terrible. But we must keep running’

16 Apr 2013 @ 9.44 am
| News

One of the explosions at the Boston Marathon
michael-brigham-headshotYork marathon runner Michael Brigham is shocked by the explosions along the route in Boston – but still plans to run in London on Sunday


I went to bed last night having heard the awful news and seen the terrifying pictures of the events in Boston yesterday.

I know Boston, I’ve been there three times as I have family that live close by. It’s a fabulous city and the marathon is a highlight in the city’s calendar. Patriots’ Day is a public holiday and as well as the marathon, baseball team the Boston Red Sox will always play.

For something like this to happen on this celebratory day will be devastating to the city and my thoughts are with everyone there.

As a runner who has taken part in many similar events I can imagine the nightmare that these poor people witnessed and it has shaken the world of running. When I was watching the news there was already talk of how this will affect the London Marathon on Sunday. We are hearing that security meetings are taking place and the run will go ahead as planned. I never thought it wouldn’t.

As tragic as what we’ve seen at Boston is we can’t not do things just in case. Each time I have read the London Marathon info pack there is always a piece about what to do in case of emergency and how the route could change etc. It’s always made me think how awful it would be if there was something like a terrorist attack at such an event – but you put that thought to the back of your mind.

We need to show that this awful crime brings us closer together not running away in fear. We will run together and run for the people of Boston

But this year, this is going to be at the forefront of many runners’ and spectators’ minds. We’ve seen the pictures, heard the stories, it’s fresh and real.

My wife and I have had the brief discussion about are we still going. For me it’s an easy decision: I’m going to run. I don’t avoid the A17 when I see the signs telling me that another person has unfortunately lost their life of that terrible road. That’s how I look at it, but although decision is easy that doesn’t mean I’m entirely comfortable with the situation.

We will drop the children off with their grandparents as my wife and I head to London, we expect to come back, we will come back – but there’s that tiny bit of doubt that wouldn’t have been there before yesterday’s events. Are we being irresponsible? I don’t think so, but it certainly makes you think.

I’m sure the vast majority of the running community with a place at London won’t be put off from running on Sunday. We need to show that awful crimes such as that committed yesterday bring us closer together not running away in fear. We will run together and run for the people of Boston.


  • Michael Brigham has competed in marathons all round the world
  • Read more of his story here