Thursday, April 25, 2013

Striding With Resilience By Nick O.

Portland, OR— “Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12:1).

I do not belong to an organized religion, but I sure see the value in the power of scripture.

One week ago, a tradition lasting more than one hundred and ten years that brought together a city and people around the world, was changed forever. Two individuals detonated crude bombs in the city with the tenth largest urban population in the country, killing three individuals and wounding over 260 others in the first successful terrorist attack since 9/11.

The ensuing manhunt for the two suspects, which resulted in the death of the elder suspect, Tamerlan, and the capture of the younger brother, Dzhokhar, managed to put the entire city of Boston on lockdown while thousands of local, state, and federal law enforcement tracked down the two suspects. The entire country and the world watched as the older brother was killed in a firefight, and the younger brother was captured, and after receiving serious medical treatment, admitted to the bombings and detailed how they were planned; he has been charged and could receive the death penalty.

During the time after the attack and throughout all of last week, I noticed the incredible spirit of Boston and the greater running community. David Ortiz, embodied the Boston toughness when he launched  ‘the first acceptable F-bomb on a sporting event telecast in the history of televised sports to which, Julius Genachowski, the chairman of the FCC tweeted “David Ortiz spoke from the heart at today's Red Sox game. I stand with Big Papi and the people of Boston.” Friends and Pages associated with the running community I follow on Facebook and Twitter posted messages along the lines of #rememberboston, #prayforboston. I competed at a track race in Eugene five days after the bombings, and many people wore Boston Marathon shirts from previous years, to show their support for the race and for the Boston community. Runners at the London marathon held a moment of silence at the beginning of the race.

Out of all of the unthinkable loss that comes with acts of terror, one thing that we do really well as Americans is show resilience. During a speech at interfaith memorial service for the victims of the tragedy, President Obama reminded us that “In the face of evil, Americans will lift up what’s good. In the face of cruelty, we will choose compassion. In the face of those who would visit death upon innocents, we will choose to save and to comfort and to heal. We’ll choose friendship. We’ll choose love.”

Bostonians, the running community, and all Americans: we will recover from this attack and move forward. To do anything else would be to give the perpetrators victory.

To donate to The One Fund, the official foundation initiated by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Tom Menino, to help the victims of the bombings, click here.

Nick O., ’13, welcomes all comments and invites readers of the Blophish to follow him on twitter @RunningIsSex or email him at

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