Boston Marathon has its own drama for Fox

Authored by Jim Langham on Apr 17, 2013

When Berne resident Dianna Fox suffered a stress fracture to her leg four weeks prior to the Boston Marathon, she was extremely disappointed, especially since she had qualified and trained long and hard for the event.
Initially, Fox had entered a qualifying time of 3:35 in the 18-34 age group. Fortunately, she has already qualified for next year’s event. Still she decided to travel to observe the event.
Fox’s trek to Boston to observe the race was accompanied by running buddy, Lori Bantz and her mother, Nancy Alig, both from Jay County.
“We arrived on Saturday evening,” said Fox. “On Sunday morning, Lori ran the 5K, which ends at the same place that the marathon does on Monday.
“We spent the day on Sunday touring Boston,” said Fox, an information technologist at the Jay County Hospital. “We saw runners everywhere; you could tell by their marathon jackets, many from different years.”
On Monday, the threesome took a taxi downtown to find a spot where they could observe the legendary event.
“We wanted to sit on the bleachers at the finish line, but you had to have a special pass to sit there,” Fox said. “We positioned ourselves between the finish line and mile marker 26, close to where the second bomb went off. We stayed around to watch finishers. We left there about two hours before the actual bombing.
“We took mom to the airport. She was going to fly out on Monday and we were going to fly out on Thursday,” continued Fox. “We got to the airport and were taking in the luggage when I got a call from my brother checking to see if we were okay.”
It was through that means that Fox first learned of the bombing.
“Immediately, the phones went crazy,” said Fox. “Nobody could get through. It was starting to make us freak out.”
At that point, the threesome decided to rent a car and leave the area to drive back to Indiana, including Fox’s mother. When they stopped at a restaurant near the airport, they saw live footage revealing the grim scenes of what was taking place on the spot where they had been standing two hours earlier.
But another train of thought came to Fox’s mind.
“All kinds of thoughts were going through my head,” said Fox. “For the first time, I realized that I wasn’t to run in this race, even after training for years. It suddenly hit me that not running was really a blessing at this point.
“With my time potential, I would have crossed the finish line right before the bombing. I would have very likely still been hanging around that area,” Fox said.
“Everything happens for a reason. In spite of all of the training I had gone through, there was obviously a reason why I wasn’t to run in that marathon.”
Fox and her riders rented a car and drove all night Monday in order to get back to the safety of their Berne area homes. I was trying to put everything into perspective,” said Fox. “There was a lot of shock, more than you can think about. We wanted to know who, why that time and why not sooner? “
Fox’s last memory of leaving the Boston area was the sound and sight of sirens and emergency vehicles. But there had been security all over during the race.
“I am so glad to be home,” Fox said. “Everyone wanted us to be home. We were so glad to get back.
“But I want to go back and run it next year,” added Fox. “I want to be a part of it next year.”

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