‘It was the worst three hours of my life’

Irish participant in marathon on looking for his wife after the explosions

SWAT officers patrol the Copley Square area after explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Massachusetts yesterday. Photograph: Reuters

SWAT officers patrol the Copley Square area after explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston, Massachusetts yesterday. Photograph: Reuters

Tue, Apr 16, 2013, 06:46

Ballymena man Eamonn Loughran spent “the worst three hours of my life” waiting to see if his wife Angela was safe after the explosions at the Boston Marathon.

He was running in the race and she had been due to stand at the finish line where the explosion went off. He ran through the finish line just before the first explosion went off and immediately looked for his wife but couldn’t find her.

“For three hours I didn’t know where she was and I really started to panic,” he said. “I was really, really worried.”

He had told her where to stand but when she tried to exit the train station at that point it was too busy and she had to stand at a different point. “There must have been a guardian angel watching her, stopping her from getting off at that station,” he said.

After the explosion went off, she got lost in the melee and couldn’t find her way back to the hotel at Beacon Hill. Her mobile phone wouldn’t work so she couldn’t contact him.

“I’ve never prayed so much in my life,” he said. “When she walked into the hotel I was so relieved.”

He said the day had started out perfectly. “It was such a beautiful day. The weather was beautiful. The crowds were great. We were having so much fun. It was such a happy occasion but now two people are dead. It’s shocking. And so many people injured.”