By Alejandro Freixes, CCNN Head Writer
The 2014 Boston Marathon gathered runners from around the world on April 21, in the 118th edition of the mega endurance event in Boston, Massachusetts.
Athletes courageously proved that they weren’t going to let last year’s tragedy get in the way of enjoying the marathon, as 36,000 participants took to the over 26 miles of roads.
A million watched from the sidelines during the world’s oldest marathon, and former UCLA cross country runner Meb Keflezighi won the men’s race as the first US American male to do so since 1983. The 38-year-old runner, who turns 39 in two weeks, is also the oldest Boston Marathon winner since at least 1930.
Keflezighi was grateful for the opportunity to compete, and reflected on last year’s race. “This is probably the most meaningful victory for an American because of what happened last year,” he said. “I’m almost 39. I just ran a personal best. I just won the Boston Marathon. I feel blessed.” His time of 2 hours 8 minutes and 37 seconds was impressive, and the crowds cheered him on at the finish line on Boylston Street. As for the ladies, defending champ Rita Jeptoo of Kenya won her third Boston Marathon!
Several survivors from last year’s attack participated as well, like Heather Abbott, who finished alongside her rescuer, Erin Chatham. Last year, Chatham helped Abbott get to safety after the explosions knocked her and several other people into a bar. Ever since, Chatham and Abbott have been good friends!
Featured image courtesy of John Hoey on Flickr. Image of runners courtesy of Rob Larson on Flickr.