Dimitris Kyriakides, an Athenian whose father Stylianos won the 1946 Boston Marathon, had a front-row view of the bombings at this year’s race and related the moments of horror to the Greek media, including news site Newsit.
Kyriakides said: “I was in the VIP seats with an American friend of mine. There had been four hours since the beginning of the marathon and it was the moment when the first marathon runners were finishing the race. The day was very beautiful, it was like a a great celebration.
“Suddenly, there was the first explosion just 25 meters from us. We were on the one side of the road and the explosion was just across the street, about 30 meters before the finish of the race. There was a lot of people there, apart from journalists covering the event and the organizing committee that helps marathoners,” he said.
He added: “The noise we heard was not deafening, but then there was smoke which darkened the whole area and we could not see what was happening. At that time we did not know what it was happening, it may have been a cracker, a tube of gas, we did not know, all of us were shocked.
“After 10-15 seconds I was at the top of the bleachers and watched the entire field to far away, and suddenly there is a second explosion 100 meters away and then I realized immediately that it was bomb. Luckily I was at 25 meters from the first bomb and did not feel anything. All those who died or were injured were those who were next to the explosive devices,” he said.
There was chaos when it happened he said, as the TV and photographic images showed. “People were panicked. The police immediately closed all the streets, there were sirens everywhere, like at the movies and everything was closed. In order for us to leave, we walked 10 kilometers to find some means to go home and watched all the shopkeepers and citizens to take out chairs helping to each other. Consider that most marathoners wore only sports clothes and were covered with blankets.”