A member of Team Red, White & Blue helps a victim on the Boston Marathon explosions.
FORT BRAGG, N.C. -
Members of the extended Fort Bragg community will participate in a running event today as a tribute to the people hurt and killed by the explosions at the Boston Marathon.
The event is just one of several planned nationwide by local chapters of Team Red, White & Blue. The organization uses physical and other social activities to connect America's active duty troops and veterans to their communities.
The goal is to enrich their lives with those connections and make it easier for troops to return from combat or retire from the military.
The short run/walk hosted by the Fort Bragg chapter of TRWB will be on post on today at 5 p.m. at Hedrick Stadium. It is open to the public. Participants are encouraged to wear red shirts and carry American flags if they would like.
"We're using it as a way for the community to come together and show hope in support," said Laura Kerns, with the Fort Bragg TRWB. "Coming together in solidarity and showing that we're going to run together as a community and stand strong."
Three members of Fort Bragg's TRWB chapter participated in the Boston Marathon. Edward Broadnax, Chris Hancock and Michael Sullivan were not hurt.
Broadnax said he was in mile 25 when he ran into the congestion of stopped runners. He said he could hear the chaos spilling out from the finish line area because he was just around the corner from the home stretch of the marathon route.
As a soldier with combat experience, Broadnax said he felt like he was in Afghanistan while standing still in the street. He worried that there may be more bombs further back from the finish line, set to explode in the crowd of backed up runners. He urged police and race volunteers to get the runners off the race route.
At least one member of another chapter of TRWB received national attention when he helped provide emergency medical attention to injured people near the finish line. The veteran, who asked to remain anonymous, was caught on camera taking off the shirt he wore during his marathon run and using it as a tourniquet on a man's leg.
Another marathon runner who may also have been a TRWB member, was also captured using his shirt as a tourniquet for the injured man.
"Some of them have been in situations like that in the past, and it just goes to show that their training is coming back to benefit the community in great ways," Kerns said.
Brandon is a North Carolina native and UNC alum who lives in Fayetteville, and covers Cumberland County and the Sandhills. Returning to North Carolina to work as a journalist is a dream come true for Brandon.More>>