Long Beach resident Robin Lynch, who was running in Monday’s Boston Marathon to raise money for local youth sports programs impacted by Hurricane Sandy, was a block away from the finish line when the first blast occurred.
“It went off before she had gotten to that location,” her husband, Jamie, said on Monday, adding that although Robin was shaken up, she was unharmed and on a train back to New York.
“I was approaching the finish line and was about a block away when the explosions occurred,” the 43-year-old city employee wrote in a Facebook post. “My heart, thoughts and prayers go out to the families of the victims.”
Lynch, one of more than 23,000 marathon competitors, was running to raise money for Long Beach girls’ sports programs. “She’s an excellent runner, and was running for charity in order to support Long Beach, and luckily, she was able to get to safety,” said City Manager Jack Schnirman. “Certainly, all of us here are thankful that she’s safe.”
Jamie Lynch said he was concerned when he was initially unable to reach his wife after he learned about the bombings. “It was the same thing with 9/11 — you don’t have any contact,” he said, “and I had to wait until someone lent her a phone until she could get a message to me. I know that she ran into a few NYPD guys who were running, and she was able to get in touch with them and they’re all traveling back together.”
Long Beach is known for its numerous running events, including the annual Snowflake Race and the Waterfront Warriors 5K, which attract runners from across the country, and Schnirman — who has run the New York City Marathon — said that Monday’s bombings struck a chord with local residents. “Long Beach is a place where we have a lot of runners, and running is a huge part of the fabric of our community,” he said, “so an incident like this is a very significant concern to us.”