YOUR Instinct: What does the 2014 Boston Marathon mean to you? - 7News Boston WHDH-TV

YOUR Instinct: What the 2014 Boston Marathon means

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BOSTON (WHDH) - For more than 100 years, the Boston Marathon was just a race with male winners, and then female winners, and later, winners in wheelchairs too.

Each year, there were stories of runners conquering physical challenges and over the years, the marathon made enough history to become a world class race, where most of the agony came at Heartbreak Hill.

Until last year, when hearts and bodies were broken at the finish line.              

How will these images from 2013 influence the Marathon that's just weeks away?  And what does the 2014 Marathon mean to you?
To hear your instincts, 7News Political Editor Andy Hiller connected on social media using Skype and FaceTime.
"I feel after the bombing like they hurt one of my family," one caller said.

We also went to a gym in Hopkinton, where the marathon starts, and to the Prudential building in Boston's Back Bay where it ends.

The men and women in Hopkinton's Crossfit Resilience gym are building the same kind of endurance it takes to run a marathon. And, perhaps because of where they live, they take this marathon personally.

"I think it means proving to the world that we know that our enemies are out there, but we know they're not going to change our spirit, or dampen our enthusiasm," Owen Martin said.

John Fahmy said, "I'm really looking forward to the community coming together, and showing not only that we're Boston Strong, but we're U.S. Strong and the World Strong."
Hiller:  "Do you have any concerns about anything happening?
Fahmy:  "No, I really don't. People are going to be really cautious and they'll look for things out of the ordinary. And if you see something, say something that's definitely going to be in effect this marathon."
                
On social media, you shared similar thoughts.

Janice Dumas, of Revere said, "I am going to be in Kenmore Square, the same as I’ve been for the last 10 years, and I will be cheering on every single runner who runs."
Hiller:  "Do you have any concern about your safety?"
Dumas:  "No, this is my country and you can't scare me away from my run."
                
David Harris, from Saugus said, "I'm going to go to the marathon and support all the runners."
Hiller:  "When you see the runners and the race, what are you going to be thinking about?"
Harris:  "I'm going to be thinking hopefully something like that won't happen.  Hopefully, everyone will have the opportunity to finish."
                
The finish line was freshly painted this week on Boylston and people came to remember the spot.

From the finish line, you can see Marathon Sports, which was badly damaged when the first bomb exploded just outside the store.  The manager who was working there last year says, this year, he'll be running.
Shane O'Hara of Marathon Sports said, "More and more I kept thinking, I don't want to be in the store that morning.  I want to be away from it and cross the finish line and kind of re-write the chapter."
Hiller:  "You mean go back and change history a little?"
O'Hara:   "In that small little weird way, yes."
                
Ryan Dalton a runner from Brookline said, "I had some family members that were close by when the unfortunate events happened, so I'll be running in all those peoples' honor."
Hiller: "Is there any other race like it?"
Dalton:  "Not that I know of.  I think it's the best race in the world and the whole world's going to be watching and I know that Boston's going to put on a good show."

A good show and a safe race is what we all want.  So my guess is in addition to the thousands of runners there will be millions more, watching and running with them in spirit. 
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