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Laura and Pat Monroe-Duprey on the way to yesterday's Boston Marathon.
Laura and Pat Monroe-Duprey on the way to yesterday's Boston Marathon.

Canton marathoner turned back by bombs

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Federal investigators say no one has claimed responsibility for the Boston Marathon attack that killed three people and wounded more than 140.

Officials say the two bombs that went off near the finish line at the Marathon were about 100 yards and 10 seconds apart. They knocked people down, shattered windows and sent dense plumes of smoke rising over the street.

A senior U.S. intelligence official says as many as two unexploded bombs were also found near the finish line, but they were safely disarmed.

Canton native Laura Monroe-Duprey and her husband were running the race together. He was running with an injury, so at mile 18, she pulled ahead of him.

Julie Grant spoke with Monroe-Duprey last night. She said when the explosion happened, she was nearing the last turn in the course, about a tenth of a mile from the finish line.

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Reported by

Julie Grant
Reporter and Producer



I hadn't quite turned the corner yet, I could see the corner but I hadn't turned. And all of a sudden there's all kinds of noise because people were yelling and screaming…so I didn't actually hear the explosion. I just all of a sudden stopped, and we could smell smoke, and then it was just chaos, because people were saying there was an explosion at the finish line.

The Dupreys at their marathon wedding ten years ago.
The Dupreys at their marathon wedding ten years ago.
We were all just standing there, trying to figure out what happened, and people were crying and there was no direction from anybody. There was no policemen, there was no overhead announcements, there's nothing to tell us what to do, or really what even happened because at first all we knew was a rumor. We knew something was bad, because I've run a lot of marathons and you never stop dead like that.

People had cell phones with them – I didn't – and they were trying to call and text, but nothing was working. And it was cold, windy and cold, and I wasn't wearing very much, so we were all kind of huddling together and trying to stay warm. But there were a lot of people.

JG: Over how much time did this happen? It sounds like if you got a chance to get cold, you must have been standing there for a while.

We stood there, I would say, probably 10, 15 minutes before one of the media people came and sad they're not going to allow you to go straight, even. He confirmed that there were two explosions and that we needed to turn around. Meanwhile, there's still probably many thousands behind us that are still coming, and either not aware or hadn't been stopped yet. So we were turned around, going against the grain, so to speak…so you're kind of shaking your head going 'no, no, no, the race is done,' [and people are like] 'what?', and you're the bearer of bad news.

It felt a little like a war scene, but there were also a lot of people that were nice, a lot of the spectators. A stranger gave me a sweater, and that helped. And later when I was walking down the street, a lady said 'were you one of the runners?', and I said 'yeah', and she [asked me if I wanted to use her phone to text somebody.] I texted my daughter because I didn't know where my husband was, and she'd been in contact with him, and when she heard I was OK she texted him, and he'd already made it back to the hotel because he was cut off quicker because he was like 20 minutes behind me.

JG: I guess that was a blessing.

It was, and it was a blessing for me because that's the only reason I wasn't around the corner, because I had waited for him one last time at a water stop, waited for quite a while, and I finally gave up because I was getting cold, and those two or three minutes were the difference between me being where I was and being at the finish line. So I was really lucky.

Boston Marathon runner Laura Monroe-Duprey says she feels lucky and blessed that her family and friends were not injured.  

Monroe-Duprey grew up in Canton, and now works at a hospital in Winter Haven, Fla. She spoke with Julie Grant from her Boston hotel room.

A tag to her story: Laura and her husband Pat actually got married 10 years ago at the Boston Marathon.  She wore a cut off dress and he wore a make-shift tux, both with shorts, so they could run. This was the first time they had qualified for the race since their wedding. 



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