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Sarasota Marathoners Recall Bomb Blasts

Three runners talk about the explosions and their sense of urgency to get to safety.

Three Sarasota marathoners recalled the horror of Monday's bomb blasts during the Boston Marathon.

In interviews with the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, they talked about their experiences and the urgency they felt to get to safety as quickly as possible.

Here are their comments:

Holly Johnson, who ran in her fourth Boston Marathon Monday, told the Herald-Tribune that she finished the race about 15 minutes before the explosions. She was aboard a bus that takes runners to dropoff points when the blasts took place. She notified worried family members as soon as she was able to, responding to urgent texts from home.

Johnson, 52, said to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune: “I just told myself to be alert and do what you need to do to get out of the city.”

Fernanda Scalera, 43, had finished the marathon and was in the family waiting area with her three kids, when the bombs detonated, killing three and injuring scores of other people.

“We started smelling gunpowder — the explosive smell. People were saying to get far away from the finish line, but Boston is tricky.... My kids were scared. We had to walk about seven miles to get back to the hotel.”

Jackie Dorociak, a 22-year-old dental student, had just run in her first Boston Marathon and was in the family meeting center with her mother and sister. When they were told what had just happened, they took a cab straight to the airport.

“I felt a little reverberation and a loud boom. We didn't really know what it was. It wasn't until we were in the cab that we saw ambulances rushing past and looked on our phones.”

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