Hastings runner Stacy Shaw had just crossed the finish line at the 117th Boston Marathon Monday when her experience as a first-time participant at one of the world's oldest, most prestigious running events changed drastically.
"I finished and maybe a minute later a big explosion close behind and smoke and then another," she wrote in an email Monday afternoon. "They told us to stay calm. I walked fast, got my medal and kept walking until I could get my bag with my cellphone."
Shaw, as well as Eli Nuss of Sutton, responded to questions for this story by email because of limited cellphone use in downtown Boston Monday.
According to the website for the Boston Athletic Association, which organizes the marathon, the 47-year-old Shaw placed 17,580 out of 17,580 finishers.
Race participants began in one of three waves. Other people finished after her but Shaw was the final runner from the first wave to cross the finish line.