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Newport-Mesa marathoners are OK

At least 25 runners at Boston are from Newport Beach, 10 from Costa Mesa.

April 15, 2013|By Steve Virgen

Melissa Mead ran in the Boston Marathon for the first time Monday. She will remember it more now because of the two bombings near the finish line at the historic race.

Mead was among at least 35 runners from the Newport-Mesa area who ran in the world's oldest and most prestigious footrace. Mead, of Costa Mesa, is a Newport Harbor High School and UC Irvine alumna.

The 23-year-old said she finished the race in about 3 hours, 49 minutes, some 20 minutes before an explosion went off near the finish line.

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"It makes me feel quite lucky," Mead said in a text message, describing how she felt to avoid the devastation.

Reports say three have died and 100 were injured after explosions went off an hour after 17,000 runners crossed the finish line, according to CNN. Explosions were so severe runners fell over from the impact.

Mead qualified for the Boston Marathon after competing in her first marathon last year at the OC Marathon. She was excited in the days leading up to the race.

"I went in the race injured, so [I] just tried to enjoy the experience," Mead said in a text. "I feel horrible for those who didn't get to finish the race today.

"Glad to have finished up before all the chaos. It's so devastating to have something like this happen at such a beloved event."

Mead said she received multiple texts and phone calls, checking in on her status.

"I was actually walking back to the hotel with my mom and sister," Mead said of where she was when an explosion went off. "We heard the booms from behind us but did not think it was anything at the time. It was insanely loud though."

Jim and Mollie Rosing from Newport Beach said they were fine after the explosions. The Rosings, husband and wife, graduated from Corona del Mar High School in 1993. They were in their hotel room when contacted by phone, but did not have much time to talk as they were receiving multiple calls checking in on them.

"It's crazy," Mollie Rosing said. "It's right down the street."

She texted later in the day, "A high and a low for sure. Jim and I were so excited about running Boston and being able to actually cross the finish line together but once we heard about the bombing we started to worry about fellow runners and spectators. It definitely was a horrible tragedy but knowing a bit about the history of the Boston Marathon and the Boston community in general, I know the city will bounce back and be better than before!"

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