Cold weather didn't stop kids on the Velocity track team Thursday, just like the tragic bombings in Boston won't stop Jefferson City runner Dana Frese from racing again next year.
"I have sadness for those who were killed, I am very angry with who is responsible for this, that they took away the innocence of this very special race and the special day in Massachusetts," he said. "I'm very motivated to go back next year, I re-qualified...I'm going to go back, I'm going to honor those that were killed and injured and support Massachusetts, Patriot's Day, and all those people that make the race special."
Frese, his wife and their 13-year-old son were one-tenth of a mile away in their hotel room when the bombs exploded. Luckily, Frese had finished the race about an hour before.
At first, they thought it was fireworks from the Boston Red Sox game at Fenway park, but soon realized something was very wrong.
The family received help and comfort from caring Bostonians and volunteers after the terrifying scene.
Frese noted the selflessness of those native to Boston, as they gave directions and guidance to runners from all parts of the world.
"The volunteers associated with the marathon stayed and helped people. This is a huge undertaking. Not only are there about 25,000 runners, there were about 20,000 volunteers to put on a race that goes through eight communities for 26 miles. So it's a huge undertaking and many of those people volunteered their time all through the night," Frese said.
Frese shared stories of other runners the family met in passing, including an Australian woman who was only one hundred yards from the finish line when the bomb went off.
The family is still trying to decompress and recover from what they witnessed on Monday, but they're glad to be home.
Frese's team of young runners are also glad the family is safely at home.
Several of the kids said they're proud of their coach for running the marathon and see him as an inspiration to do their best.
Frese is optomistic about the future of the Boston Marathon. He thinks this year's tragedy will motivate even more runners to try to qualify, and thousands more spectators will be on the streets remembering those affected this year.