Ellis Andrews, left, shown in a recent photo, was participating in
Monday's Boston Marathon not far from where the bomb went off.
By ROY WOOD
Three Penticton area residents running the Boston Marathon are apparently safe following a pair
of bomb blasts that killed two and injured more than 100 near the finish line of
Monday's 117th iteration of the event. Ellis Andrews, in an interview from his
hotel room in Boston on Monday afternoon, said that he, Tom Evans and Joan Wickwire are fine and accounted for.
Andrews said he and two running friends left the finish line about 15 minutes before
the explosions. "We stopped at Ben & Jerry's for ice cream. We were inside
the store and didn't even hear the explosions."
He said, "Tom (Evans) would have run a faster time than we would have and I'm
sure he would have been totally out of the area probably an hour before us."
"When you finish a marathon, you want to get some food and get your pack and go
back to your hotel and relax" he said.
Andrews said a friend from Penticton had contacted Wickwire and then sent Andrews
an email saying she is fine.
Near the site of the explosion, Andrews said, Several people have lost limbs.
"It's a terrible situation on a great day in a wonderful city. We were
just extremely fortunate that we finished when we did and were out of the area."
He said communication has been difficult because authorities shut down cell phone
service in the area for fear that more bombs could potentially be detonated with
Boston's Logan Airport and the city's subway system were also shut down Monday
afternoon, he said. "We've been asked to stay in our hotel and not go out to
restaurants or anything."
A dedicated marathoner and triathlete, Andrews was running his third Boston event.
He has also been a regular competitor in Ironman and Ultraman triathlons. "This
is going to change the whole face of marathons around the world. I don't know how
you'd ever police a 26-mile route," Andrews said.
His friends, Paul and Paulette Dalton, of Prince Edward Island and Toronto, have
also been regular participants in the Ironman competition in Penticton.
Stockwell Day, former Member of Parliament for Okanagan Coquihalla, qualified to
compete in this year's event but did not due to a lack of training time. He was not
in Boston on Monday.