Annette French-Bearden’s training could not have prepared her for Monday’s Boston Marathon. Shortly after she had completed the 26.2-mile race in less than four hours, two explosions rocked the city and nation’s most famous marathon.
The horror unfolded as thousands of individuals — race participants and spectators — gathered near the finish line.
From the safety of her hotel room, a shaken French-Bearden, 52, spoke with the Reporter, saying she was about 100 yards from the area where two bombs detonated. Her daughter, April, a Dallas resident who was watching the race, was even closer. Both women were physically unscathed.
“We are back at the hotel,” she said. “We are safe.”
French-Bearden, bib No. 5492, said the incident occurred on the fourth hour — third wave — of the race, shortly after she had crossed the finish line with a time of 3:55:06.
“I had completed the race and was going to get my drop-off bag,” she said, adding the scene quickly transformed into one of chaos. “It was pretty hectic.”
The race was closed and race headquarters were on lockdown as law enforcement officials and emergency responders descended on the bloody scene. The first of two explosions reportedly occurred at 2:50 p.m. (Eastern Time).
Less than an hour later, it was reported that two individuals were dead and about two dozen were injured, some being dismembered.
“There are lots of injuries,” French-Bearden said.
By Tuesday morning, the death toll had risen to three, and the dead included an 8-year-old boy. But officials reportedly told USA Today that an additional 30 people were hospitalized with life-threatening injuries.
The two explosive devices were about 12 seconds and 100 yards apart, according to an official cited at usatoday.com, who said the devices were “rudimentary” but powerful.
“It’s unbelievable,” French-Bearden said.
A Granbury resident, French-Bearden works at Paluxy Valley Health and Fitness Center in Glen Rose, where she has been a personal trainer for the past 10 years.