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Penn State Alumnus Shares Boston Marathon Story

“I just keep thinking to myself ‘I just walked by that site 45 minutes ago — on the same side of the street.’”

That’s the sentence that keeps replaying in Ryne Crabb’s mind.

Crabb, a 2006 Penn State graduate, spent the day taking in the traditional Patriots’ Day events by watching Revolutionary War re-enactments at Lexington and Concord before heading over to the Boston Marathon. After heading downtown and convening with friends at a bar about a quarter mile from the finish line, Crabb, a Boston native, heard a loud noise similar to the ones he heard only a few hours ago at Lexington.

“It sounded like a cannon went off,” he said. “The noise just echoed down the street… And all of sudden, everyone was running away from the finish line and toward us.”

The bar staff rushed to get everyone away from the windows and later evacuated dozens of people out of the building. Shortly after exiting the bar, Crabb saw a middle-aged female eyewitness recount what she saw to police.

“She was saying ‘I just saw a guy get both of his legs blown off. I just saw a person get their face blown off. There was blood everywhere.”

Crabb, like most, is still in shock about what happened on Boylston Street this afternoon. When I was speaking with him during a brief phone interview, ambulance sirens continuously reverberated in the background.

“It has just been choppers and sirens all day,” he said. “It’s unreal because Patriots’ Day is a city-wide holiday. The Red Sox play at 11 a.m. Everyone’s downtown. Everyone looks forward to this day.”

Primarily, Crabb says his thoughts and prayers go out to those who were directly affected by this bombing that has killed at least two and injured dozens more.

“My heart goes out to the victims and families of this terrible tragedy,” he said.

Crabb says he knew several people running in the marathon, and to his knowledge, all of them are safe and accounted for. At around 6 p.m., about three hours after the bombs were detonated, Crabb reunited with his friend Scott Magee who participated in today’s marathon. Magee says he was only about 300 yards from the finish line when the bombs exploded.

“I’m just glad I’m a slow runner,” Magee said.

As we reported earlier, all runners from the Nittany Valley Running Club running in the Boston Marathon are all accounted for.

About the Author

Ryan Beckler

Ryan is a senior in the Smeal College of Business majoring in Marketing. He is a Lion Ambassador who loves giving tours to prospective students. His favorite activities include distributing news and consuming Chipotle.

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