Last month, Kelsey Barry ran the Boston Marathon for the fourth time. The 28-year-old Watertown resident also ran in 2013, and it profoundly changed her life.
Barry was about five minutes from finishing the Marathon in 2013 when she and other runners came to a sudden stop. At first police and spectators could not provide any information, but a few minutes later word spread that a first b0mb had gone off near the finish line.
Unlike others, however, Barry did not flee from the danger. Instead her first thought was to rush to the area to find her family and friends who were waiting for her at the finish.
“I did not get too far to help, but the fact that my first thought was to run towards the chaos, deep down I knew I was meant to help people,” Barry said. “I had the will power to run towards it while others didn’t think twice and ran the other way.”
Having grown up in Watertown, and still residing here, Barry said she was also touched by the the events after the Marathon.
“That also makes the Boston Marathon even closer to my heart,” she said.
At the time she worked in marketing for an international company, but since then she has become a nurse.
“It’s ironic because after the race I was going to quit my job and enroll in nursing school and instead got laid off,” Barry said. “Talk about ‘everything happens for a reason.’ It just reassured me that I was making the right move, and life is all about timing.”
Barry is now a medical surgical registered nurse at Mount Auburn Hospital. She ran the race on the hospital’s team this year.
“Experiencing what occurred that day in 2013, I think it about it everyday, still, but it has made me a stronger person, and a better nurse,” Barry said.
Because the race holds a special place in her heart Barry said she hopes to run the marathon every year. The race is still special for her.
“This year was my fourth Boston marathon, but is just as exciting as my first one,” Barry said. “It truly is the greatest race to be a part of. I also feel that we as runners are responsible for keeping the lives of those lost in 2013 alive every step we take, therefore every step I took whether I was in pain or not – I had a smile on my face.”