Hours after the Boston Marathon attack Jason Rehwald, a Brownfield chiropractor, was still trying to hold back tears after his terrifying experience.
Rehwald says he finished the race and was waiting for his wife Megan to cross the finish line. As soon as she finished, they snapped a few pictures with their medals, and began walking to meet their family.
"We were about 100 yards down from the finish line. About five minutes after she crossed we heard the explosion and saw a lot of smoke go into the street. Then after the first we immediately heard a second explosion." Rehwald said. "Immediately everything went chaotic. People were running all over the place. Ambulances, EMS crews, police, firemen and just everyone was hurrying and pushing people off the roads."
Rehwald says emergency sirens blared from every direction, as the medical tents originally intended for the runners were transformed into first aid stations for those injured in the blasts.
"I'm just very thankful we have all our family members safe, and I'm just very saddened for all victims that came across at that time. That was a time where it was a large amount of runners coming across, and we're told many were handicapped," Rehwald said on the verge of crying. "It's a tragedy. You just know it could not take place from someone who had a heart; there's just no way."
We also spoke to Texas Tech chemistry professor Paul Pare who also finished the Boston Marathon. He was about three blocks past the finish line when the first explosion happened.
"I thought about walking a bit during the race which would have slowed me down about 10 minutes," Pare said over the phone just hours after the attack. "Honestly I was thinking about my running club in Lubbock and the shame of finishing any slower motivated me to push through and finish early so I could not be there at the time it occurred."
Pare says it took a while for the shock to wear off and the reality to set in. When he made it back to his hotel, Pare says officials advised him along with hundreds of others to stay in their hotels for safety.
Both Pare and Rehwald say their hearts go out to those victims injured during the attack.
Pare is expected to fly back to Lubbock Tuesday morning, and the Rehwalds will also be returning to Lubbock this week.
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