Arizonans run for Boston


by Natalie Brand

Posted on April 18, 2013 at 7:33 AM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 30 at 8:11 AM

PHOENIX -- Rachel James and Nick Coury just returned to the Valley from running the Boston Marathon and witnessing the tragedy of that day.

"Words really can't describe the emotion that came over you all day long," James said.

They had finished the race before the first bomb went off Monday. 

"Everyone we know personally ended up OK," Coury said.  "In that sense, we're really blessed."
As thoughts and prayers remain with dozens who weren't so lucky, James and Coury ran in Tempe Wednesday night in honor of Boston. The event was organized by the Phoenix Chapter of Team RWB Arizona, a veterans support organization.
"We're here to support you any way we can, show we're united, and we're strong," Team RWB member Roland Gonzalez said.
Team RWB (Red, White and Blue), which has chapters nationwide, had members running in the Boston Marathon. A striking image posted on Facebook captured one RWB member wrapping his shirt around the leg of an injured woman shortly after the blast -- just one example of strangers helping strangers.
"He wanted to remain anonymous," Phoenix Team RWB Captain Bill Egan said. "To the guys doing that, it's just a normal act.  Serving the public, helping people; to them, they're not heroes. This is just what needs to be done."
James and Coury said they were struck by the immense courage of first responders, emergency workers, and even runners who put themselves in harm's way to help others.
"For those people to act like that, it probably saved a lot of lives," Egan said.
Carrying flags and a sign that read "We are here for you Boston," Arizonans want to spread a message of strength, support and hope.
"It's an amazing community; they will stay strong," James said.