ROUSES POINT — Twenty-six seconds of silence was observed for each of those slain in the Newtown school massacre at the start of the 2013 Boston Marathon.
As Mary K. Duprey stood among the 23,336 in Runners Village in Hopkinton, she looked around.
“It just runs through your head in a minute,” the Rouses Point woman said. “This would be perfect target for somebody to do a terrorist act with all these people in one spot at one time.
“That kind of flashes in your head and goes away, and you get involved in the moment of the race.”
This was Duprey’s first Boston Marathon; wearing bib number 20023, she ran Monday’s race with an official time of 3:50:49.
“It went quite well,” she said. “My legs started to cramp out at 13 miles. I could feel them starting to get a little tight in my quads.”
But otherwise, she crossed the finish line without incident.
But then her premonition unfolded in twin bombings that killed three and injured more than 180 people.
“My actual target time was four hours, which, had I not run as well, I would have hit the four hours, and that would have been right at the time the explosions went off.”
She was three blocks away when she heard the first blast.
“I couldn’t see the people. I saw the smoke. I heard it. You felt it. I was reaching up to the bus to get my bag out of it. I had my back to the explosion.
“I thought, ‘Gee that was a cannon.’ I thought it was something they did at the race, until I turned around and saw the smoke.”
A man next to her said, “That’s not right. Something’s wrong.”
“Then, we heard the second explosion go off. I still was not thinking a bomb. I was thinking maybe a gas line.”