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Athletico Employee Returns Home to Boston

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*Editor’s Note: Last month, runners everywhere were affected by the tragic bombings at the Boston Marathon. Fortunately, all Athletico employees that participated in the race were unharmed. Our thoughts remain with all of those who were affected. This special entry is written by Athletico physical therapist Mike Morrow, a Boston native, who shares with us his experience returning to Boston and the site of the Boston Marathon for the first time since the bombings last month.


Mike visits the site of the Boston Marathon bombings

Growing up outside of Boston and having gone to Northeastern University, the Boston Marathon is part of everyone’s life in some way. You either knew someone running, watching, wanting to run it, or you watched it yourself. You knew the Red Sox had an early game and you likely had the day off to enjoy it. You may not have known exactly what Patriot’s Day was, but you knew that you were proud to be from Boston because of it. It’s a tradition like nothing else I’ve seen, and it always had a positive vibe in the air.

I volunteered in the Boston Marathon medical tent as a physical therapy student for 4 years and cherish those memories as an introduction to endurance athletics and the state of mind of a marathoner. I have co-workers that have run it and others trying, now more than ever, to qualify for it. I’m not fast enough to qualify, but it’s something that’s always been fun to think about.


Boston Marathon memorial on Copley Square. Mike added an Athletico t-shirt to the collection (lower left corner).

To have visited the site where bombs went off a month ago was somber but peaceful. I spoke with a local hotel doorman who jumped in to help and pulled barricades off of people that were trapped after the explosion. He said things were getting back to normal and was grateful for the way the city pulled together. His brother worked for the Boston Police and was part of the first response. There is still a memorial on Copley Square with running shoes tied to it, signs and posters with prayers and support, shirts, hats, flowers, and all kinds of well wishes. Police guard it. Passersby are drawn in.

Locally, Athletico co-workers of mine and I have participated in memorial fun runs and have been brought closer to the running community because of it.  After a lot of racing last year, I vowed to take this year off.  After Marathon Monday though, I have recommitted and will be running the 2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, raising money for the Alzheimer’s Association, and am committed to getting back into the medical tent of the Boston Marathon next year.

Having seen the city respond the way it did – police and citizens running toward the explosion to help instead of away from it, finding the people responsible so quickly, and getting back to normal life with the memory remaining – I’ve never been more proud to be from Boston.

– Mike Morrow, PT, Facility Manager at Athletico’s Loop facility

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