Defiant Aussies set to run Boston Marathon


Despite the terror attack that left three dead at last year's Boston Marathon, Australians from all walks of life will be running on Monday.

They have come from Australia and beyond, more than 36,000 runners united by their love of marathons and defiant that a violent few will not dictate their lives.

The Boston Marathon, dating back to 1897 to make it the world's oldest annual marathon, was physically and emotionally rocked a year ago when bombs at the finish line ripped through spectators, killing three, injuring more than 200 and knocking runners off their feet.

Security is intense for Monday's race, with 3500 uniformed police and 600 US National Guard members blanketing the 42.195km course and the expected one million spectators, who this year are banned from carrying backpacks.

Melbourne mother of three Mikayla Rose ran the Boston Marathon last year, passing the finish line on Boylston St just 40 minutes before the two bombs exploded.

The 40-year-old could have been one of the victims.

Rose was in her hotel and about to head back to Boylston St to cheer on other runners when the bombs exploded.

"We only went to the hotel because it was so close to the finish line," she told AAP on Saturday.

Despite the near miss Rose was defiant, penning a letter days later to Boston declaring, "I will see you again".

The city was so taken with the interior designer, who also works for the Breast Cancer Network Australia, it invited her to be part of a documentary about the marathon directed by acclaimed filmmaker Jon Dunham.

A film crew will follow Rose during the race and will go back to Australia to capture her life there.

"Walking down to Boylston St for the first time this year was certainly a very emotional experience, but now I'm just excited," she said.

"There's a fabulous buzz amongst the people."

Dr Tony Buti, a member of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly, was planning to run in last year's race but when parliament was suddenly recalled he had to cancel the trip.

"I remember last year I was on a morning run and received a call from my son who was in college and said, 'A bomb has gone off at the marathon'," Dr Buti said.

"I was shocked and at first I was happy I wasn't there, but then part of me wished I was.

"I wanted to be here this year.

"There's a real resolve.

"The start will be incredibly emotional and as we run past at the finish where the bombs went off last year it will be even more emotional."

Sydney runner Trent Morrow, known worldwide as Marathon Man, is no stranger to lining up for a marathon.

The Boston Marathon will be the 40-year-old's 200th marathon since January 1, 2013, and his 160th in the past year.

Morrow, who runs to inspire others and pay tribute to his mother Kay and step mother Carol who both died from cancer, selected Boston as the final race of his epic journey, which includes races across all seven continents.

Not surprisingly, for the man who ran a marathon in Antarctica and raced across the Sahara Desert, the threat of a repeat terror attack does not deter him.

"On Monday Boston will be one of the safest places on the planet," said Morrow, who ran a marathon in Kentucky on Saturday and in the past week completed five other marathons in five different US states.

"With all of the security measures in place, the police, fire and servicemen in Boston will do a fantastic job.

"I have absolutely no concerns about it."

The race is scheduled to begin at 9am on Monday (11pm Monday AEST).

Source AAP

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