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As It Unfolded: The 118th Boston Marathon

The News: A year after the bombing, spectators lined the 26.2-mile Boston Marathon course through eight cities and towns to cheer one of the largest fields of runners in race history.

We’ve concluded this live blog coverage.

One Final Finish For Team Hoyt

It’s the final marathon finish for Team Hoyt.

A few minutes ago, the father-son duo crossed the finish line, where they were mobbed by supporters and the media. Our Asma Khalid shares this photo:

We profiled the legendary team earlier this month. They’ve been marathon stalwarts since 1981.

Seven Run In Honor Of Lu Lingzi

Seven members of the Boston University community were chosen to run in honor of Lu Lingzi, a graduate student who was killed in last year’s bombing. Ryan Shea graduated from BU in 2011:

Shea won his bib after submitting an application video to BU that showed him running a spur-of-the-moment 26.2 miles on a treadmill — with no training — just days after the marathon bombings. Read more about Shea and BU’s Lu Lingzi team here.

Thousands Still Streaming Across Finish Line

Thousands of runners are still making their way toward the finish line. Here’s a scene from Commonwealth and Mass Ave that was shared on our real-time map about 10 minutes ago:

comm ave

Watch WBZ-TV’s live finish line camera here.

Photo: A Post-Marathon Proposal

After finishing the Boston Marathon, Gregory Picklesimer proposed to Carla White. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

After finishing the Boston Marathon, Gregory Picklesimer proposed to his girlfriend Carla White. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

See more photos here.

At Starting Line, New And Old Traditions Celebrated

WBUR’s Alyssa Creamer was at the starting line in Hopkinton this morning, where she spoke to runners and spectators:

Spectators cheer on runners at the starting line in Hopkinton. (Joe Spurr for WBUR)

Spectators cheer on runners at the starting line in Hopkinton. (Joe Spurr for WBUR)

Seated on one of the grassy lawns near the marathon’s starting line in Hopkinton, Janet Bourette, of Shrewsbury, sat back in the sun with her husband after watching the final wave of runners take off. It was her first time cheering on runners at the Boston Marathon.

“I’ve always wanted to come,” Bourette said. “And this year was more important, more special. I decided I really wanted to be here to support the runners.”

She said watching the marathon was a fun and amazing experience for her that brought tears to her eyes.

“There are no words, the camaraderie and everybody being together running as one, it’s just amazing how people can come together and unite as one,” she said.

Kelly Swanson, of Wilbraham, has been attending the Boston Marathon with her family every year since she was born.

She’s carried on the tradition with her own children, and at the start in Hopkinton she said this year’s police presence was far greater than she’d ever seen before. Swanson said it made her feel safe, but that she’d feel safe regardless.

“We come every year, a lot of [my family members] have run too,” Swanson said. “It makes you feel proud to be a Bostonian. I’m glad to see everybody here and that the whole thing with terrorism didn’t scare people away.”

She said people came out to support the marathon and its runners “in full force” and that the large attendance shows how positive the event is for the community.

Spectators Push Runners Over Heartbreak Hill

WBUR’s Martin Kessler has been checking out the scene at Heartbreak Hill this afternoon:

 

As “Sexy and I Know It” blasted from speakers and spectators danced on the side of the road, the first wave of runners climbing Heartbreak Hill couldn’t help but smile, pump their fists, and blow kisses — even though they had already run 20 miles, even though they were still climbing to the summit, and even though they still had 6.2 miles left to race.

On this notoriously difficult stretch of the Boston Marathon, the atmosphere has been festive. Spectators along this part of the route seem to have embraced their unique position, encouraging runners up the hill with energetic claps and loud music.

And at the bottom, spectators cheered out of admiration.

“You’re going to make it. The hard part is over,” one onlooker repeated as runners streamed past.

“Just a 10k with a 20m warm-up” a sign read.

Security at this part of the course was noticeable but unobtrusive. Uniformed officers patrolled the street but no incidents to report so far.

Haslet-Davis, Bauman At The Finish Line

Adrianne Haslet-Davis, a dancer who lost her left leg in last year’s bombing (and recently danced on her new bionic leg), tweeted this photo with fellow survivor Jeff Bauman:

Bauman, who visited us at WBUR last week, lost both his legs in the attack.

The AP reports:

… They sat a few feet away from Carlos Arredondo, who helped save his life.

As he walked away from the finish line under his own power, his prosthetics showing, Bauman said it felt “great” to be back. He also said he felt very safe.

Photo: Survivors Jessica Kensky And Patrick Downes Cross Finish Line

Husband and wife Patrick Downes and Jessica Kensky, who each lost a leg in last year’s bombing, rolled across the finish line on handcycles this afternoon:

Boston Marathon bombing survivors, husband and wife Patrick Downes and Jessica Kensky, who each lost a leg in last year's bombings, roll across the finish line Monday. (Elise Amendola/AP)

(Elise Amendola/AP)

WBUR’s Sacha Pfeiffer spoke with Downes and Kensky earlier this month about their recovery, and how their new service dog has helped them cope over the last year.

“To have a dog like him around, you laugh 10, 20, 50 times more a day, and you can’t help but have that lift the mood,” Downes said.

Read the full story here.

Watch Live

The BAA’s online broadcast of the race has concluded. You can now watch local coverage via WBZ-TV. You can also watch for your runners via WBZ’s finish line and Heartbreak Hill cameras.

Tweeting While Running? For These 2, Sure

Dr. Natalie Stavas made it to mile 26 last year when the bombing ended her marathon. She then pushed her way through to the blast site. She spoke with us earlier this month:

… a police officer tried to stop me coming out of the alley, and I yelled at him. I said, “I’m a doctor. I’m a kids’ doctor. Let me help.” I ended up doing CPR on one woman who unfortunately, tragically, passed away that day. And then saw four other people who had groin injuries and lower extremity injuries. It’s amazing because suddenly it was over. It was just, I stood there, and it was like there was nothing else left to do. It was over.

She’s back this year, and tweeting while running. You can follow her here.

Another, Bill Kole, the AP bureau chief for New England, is also tweeting his marathon. You can follow him here.

Juli Windsor Wants To Be First Woman With Dwarfism To Finish Boston

Juli Windsor gets high fives from Wellesley College students. (Mary Schwalm/AP)

Juli Windsor gets high fives from Wellesley College students. (Mary Schwalm/AP)

Juli Windsor was among the thousands of runners who were stopped before they could finish last year’s race. This year she’s back to try to and accomplish her goal of becoming the first woman with dwarfism to complete the Boston Marathon.

She joined WBUR’s Bob Oakes earlier this month to talk about her experience. She says this year’s race is about more than just her personal goal:

This time it’s not just my race and the fact of being the first woman with dwarfism to complete the Boston Marathon. This race is about so much more. It’s about the city. It’s about those who’ve been affected and it’s about coming back with the spirit of empowerment and strength.

Read our full interview with Windsor, and three other runners who are returning to finish what they couldn’t last year, here.

Photos: Winners Celebrate

Keflezighi finished in 2:08:38, a personal record and the second fastest by an American male at Boston. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Meb Keflezighi is the first American man to win the Boston Marathon since 1983. He finished in 2:08:37, a personal record and the second fastest by an American male at Boston. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Rita Jeptoo, of Kenya, finished in 2:18:57, a women’s course record. (Elise Amendola/AP)

Rita Jeptoo, of Kenya, finished in 2:18:57, a women’s course record. This is the second victory in a row for Jeptoo, who also won in 2006. (Elise Amendola/AP)

It’s the second straight push rim title for McFadden, who finished in 1:35:06. (Elise Amendola/AP)

Tatyana McFadden, of the United States, won the women’s wheelchair division for the second consecutive year. She finished in 1:35:06. (Elise Amendola/AP)

Ernst Van Dyk, of South Africa, breaks the tape to win the men's wheelchair division of the 118th Boston Marathon. (Elise Amendola/AP)

Ernst Van Dyk, of South Africa, breaks the tape to win the men’s wheelchair division of the 118th Boston Marathon. It was Van Dyk’s 10th Boston Marathon victory. He finished in 1:20:36. (Elise Amendola/AP)

See more photos here.

Meb Keflezighi Is First American Man To Win Boston Marathon Since 1983

His unofficial time: 2:08:37. The BAA says if the time stands, it will be a personal record for Keflezighi and the second fastest by an American male at Boston.

Meb Keflezighi, of San Diego, Calif., breaks the tape to win Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Meb Keflezighi, of San Diego, Calif., breaks the tape to win the Boston Marathon. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Rita Jeptoo Sets Course Record To Win Women’s Field

Rita Jeptoo, of Kenya, celebrates her win in the women's division. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Rita Jeptoo, of Kenya, celebrates her win in the women’s division. Charles Krupa/AP)

Rita Jeptoo, of Kenya, takes the women’s title for the second year in a row. She finished in 2:18:57, a women’s course record. She also won in 2006.

This shot, from our real-time map, shows Jeptoo on Commonwealth Avenue:

jeptoo2

To Give You An Idea Of The Crowds…

These alerts, obviously, may change, but they’re worth keeping in mind if you’re heading into Boston this afternoon. Here’s our spectator’s guide.

Your View Of The Route

Capture0421
We’re pulling in your Tweets/Instagrams from along the 26.2 mile course in real time. You can follow along here, or share what you’re seeing with #BostonMarathon.

Keflezighi And Boit Lead Men At Half

Meb Keflezighi, of the United States, leads Josphat Boit, also from the United States, as they passed Wellesley College. (AP Photo/Mary Schwalm)

Meb Keflezighi, of the United States, leads Josphat Boit, also from the United States, as they passed Wellesley College. (Mary Schwalm/AP)

Keeping An Eye On Security From Framingham

More than 260 people, representing more than 60 agencies, are coordinating security from the Framingham headquarters of the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, per WBUR’s Jack Lepiarz:

During a briefing at the bunker, Gov. Deval Patrick said there’ve been no specific credible threats against today’s marathon. But still, he said officials are staying vigilant.

Officials are watching security camera feeds and listening to radio reports from the ground.

Women’s Wheelchair Winner: Tatyana McFadden

Tatyana McFadden, of the U.S., breaks the tape to win the women's wheelchair division of the 118th Boston Marathon. (Elise Amendola/AP)

Tatyana McFadden, of the U.S., breaks the tape to win the women’s wheelchair division of the 118th Boston Marathon. (Elise Amendola/AP)

It’s the second straight push rim title for McFadden, who finished in 1:35:06.

Marblehead’s Shalane Flanagan Leads At Half

WBUR’s Delores Handy, who is in Wellesley near the halfway mark, captured this shot of the elite women:

Shalane Flanagan leads in Wellesley. (Delores Hand/WBUR)

Shalane Flanagan leads in Wellesley. (Delores Hand/WBUR)

According to the Boston Athletic Association, Marblehead’s Shalane Flanagan was leading the women’s pack at the 13.1 mile mark at a record pace:

 

The Motivation Behind The Runners

WBUR’s Alyssa Creamer has been in Hopkinton talking to runners all morning, finding out what pushes them to the finish line. She chatted with Jen Mooney, 26, who is running for her 7-year-old cousin who beat leukemia last year:

 

 

For the last two months, we’ve been asking runners what motivates them. You can read responses here.

Men’s Wheelchair Winner: Ernst Van Dyk

It’s the 10th Boston Marathon title for Van Dyk, who finished in 1:20:36.

Tight Security Along Course

Security is tight along the course today, especially in Boston where crowds are expected to be large. Here, Boston Police check bags near Kenmore Square:

Boston Police check bags along the marathon route near Kenmore Sq. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

(Jesse Costa/WBUR)

See more photos here.

Elite Men Leave Hopkinton

Leading the first wave of 9,000 runners, the elite men left Hopkinton at 10 a.m.. They should cross the finish line around noon.

Elite men runners leave the start line in the 118th Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)

Elite men runners leave the start line in the 118th Boston Marathon. (Stephan Savoia/AP)

There are three more waves of 9,000 runners, the last at 11:25 a.m.

Photo: First Wheelchair Marathoners In Framingham

Just minutes ago the first wheelchair athletes made their way through Framingham. This photo was shared on our real-time map of updates from along the course:

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And They’re Off…

Elite women runners leave the start line of the Boston Marathon in Hopkinton. (Stephan Savoia/AP)

Elite women runners leave the start line of the Boston Marathon in Hopkinton. (Stephan Savoia/AP)

Following the handcycle division at 9:22 a.m., the elite women left Hopkinton moments ago. You can watch live online here. And follow WBUR’s Alex Ashlock on Twitter for updates from the press truck on the course just in front of the women.

The elite men, as well as the first wave of runners, leave Hopkinton at 10 a.m.

Team Hoyt’s Last Boston, Ben Beach’s 47th

Rick and Dick Hoyt, Boston Marathon stalwarts since 1981, by the Hamilton Reservoir behind their home in Holland, Mass. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Rick and Dick Hoyt by the Hamilton Reservoir behind their home in Holland, Mass. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Dick and Rick Hoyt will run their last Boston Marathon as a team today. Dick, 73, and Rick, 52, have been race stalwarts since 1981. Last year was supposed to be their final Boston Marathon, but they were stopped at mile 23.

WBUR’s Sacha Pfeiffer spoke with Dick and Rick last month. Dick said he knew right away they would be back in 2014.

“Oh yeah. Because — well, we didn’t finish it. But the big thing, our concern, was the people who got killed and wounded, you know? And so that’s why we’re running this year, is for the people who got killed and wounded.”

And Maryland native Ben Beach will run his 47th consecutive Boston today. He ran his first in 1968 at age 18 as a freshman at Harvard. He holds the record for the most consecutive Boston Marathons run in history.

WBUR’s Asma Khalid spoke with Beach, who says many things about the sport have changed:

“In 1968, you showed up at Hopkinton Junior High School, and some guy would put a stethoscope on your chest to confirm that you were healthy enough to run it and hand out your number, and you were on your way,” he said. “It’s just a different world.”

First Division Leaves Hopkinton

The mobility impaired division was the first to take off from Hopkinton around 8:50 a.m.

Next up, the wheelchair division at 9:17 a.m. followed by handcycles at 9:22 a.m. Elite women leave at 9:32 a.m., followed by the elite men at 10 a.m.

Peter Sagal On Running Boston Again

Peter Sagal, waving, runs next to William Greer around Mile 24 of the 2013 Boston Marathon. This picture was taken roughly 20 minutes before the bombs went off. (Linda McIntosh/Courtesy)

Peter Sagal, waving, runs next to William Greer around Mile 24 of the 2013 Boston Marathon. This picture was taken roughly 20 minutes before the bombs went off. (Linda McIntosh/Courtesy)

Peter Sagal, host of NPR’s “Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me,” is running his fourth Boston Marathon today. He will run as a guide for a legally blind runner named Erich Manser, a paratriathlete from the Boston area.

Sagal recently told WBUR he uses running as a way to explore the many cities he visits.

I’ve run all over the country, pretty much wherever I’ve visited. When I have a chance I go. It’s very important to me and it’s a great way to see where I’m going. For anyone who travels a lot, there’s a tendency to fall into this habit of going from airport to hotel to conference venue, or in my case, to performance center, and then back to the airport and home. And you have no idea where you’ve been. In fact I remember once I was in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Our hotel and performance center were in this new shopping center that had just been built. I remember walking into the middle of it, and turning 360 degrees, and looking at a P.F. Chang’s, and a Banana Republic, and a Gap and thinking to myself: there’s nothing in my field of view that would indicate where I am in America right now. There was no indicator. I couldn’t tell. If I dropped somebody there in the middle of the mall they wouldn’t have been able to tell me. So running, even if it’s through ugly parts of town — at least I know where I’ve been.

Read the full interview on Cognoscenti, WBUR’s ideas and opinion page.

It’s Going To Be A Beautiful Day

Meteorologist David Epstein says after a cold start to the day, temperatures will reach the 60s for most. He also warns:

If you are running or watching, the biggest issue will be the strength of the sun. After a long winter, there will be some sunburned folks by the end of the day.

Read his full forecast here.

Runners Gather In Hopkinton

(Joe Spurr for WBUR)

(Joe Spurr for WBUR)

Runners are gathering in Hopkinton this morning, where in a couple hours they will take off on their 26.2 mile journey to Boylston Street in what’s expected to be an emotional race.

Here’s a breakdown of race start times:

  • Mobility impaired: 8:50 a.m. 
  • Wheelchair division: 9:17 a.m.
  • Handcycles: 9:22 a.m. 
  • Elite women: 9:32 a.m. 
  • Elite men and wave one: 10:00 a.m. 
  • Wave two: 10:25 a.m. 
  • Wave three: 11:00 a.m. 
  • Wave four: 11:25 a.m. 

If you’re planning to watch, check out our spectator guide for detailed information on new security measures as well as road closures and viewing locations that are accessible by public transportation.

Both Copley and Arlington Green Line stations will be closed all day, as well as some above ground stops along the Green C Line in Brookline. Here’s more information on MBTA service today.

You can catch from home on WBZ-TV and on the Boston Athletic Association’s website.

And check out our real-time map of Tweets and Instagrams from along the 26.2-mile course.

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