Student's family survives Boston bombing

Written by Muleskinner Staff

Story by NICOLE COOKE, Copy Editor—
Monday’s bombing at the Boston Marathon affected people around the world.
Three people were killed, including a Boston University graduate student from China, and more than 170 people were wounded, according to the Associated Press.
The affects of the tragic event even reached Warrensburg.
Lauren Klaus, a senior graphic arts technology major, wasn’t in Boston at the time of the bombing, but several of her family members were in the race.
Klaus’ cousin Heather ran the marathon, and she was near the 25th mile marker when the bombs went off. Klaus’ sister, Sarah, three other cousins, and two family friends were also in attendance to cheer Heather on.
Heather’s supporters were in between both bombings.
They were standing close to the finish line, around 40 feet from the initial bombing.
Klaus found out about the bombing on Facebook about 12 minutes after it happened. She frantically searched online for any news about what was happening.
“I immediately went to tears, panicking. I started to have bad chest pains and had to call a family member to calm down,” Klaus said. “I thought my sister was dead. Not only just my sister, but my cousins, our aunt and two family friends. I thought they were all dead.”
Klaus said she tried to contact her family, but was unable to get through. She finally called her dad, who could only report that her sister was OK and barricading herself.
“My sister said she felt like it was 9/11 all over again,” Klaus said. “It took them over two hours to get out of the madness. They couldn’t find their cars because of how terrorized everyone was.”
Sarah was able to get out a quick text to update everyone during the chaos.
“Sarah sent me one text during the madness – ‘Can’t call now, we’re okay, please tell Dan (her husband) that I love him. I love you,’” Klaus said.
“Three and a half hours later, I finally got to hear her voice. She told me that it was something she will never ever forget. There were shoes and blood everywhere. She started sobbing and telling me she really thought she was going to die. It was a war zone.”
Once Sarah made it home to St. Louis, she went to Urgent Care.
She had scratches in her eyes and a pinched nerve in her neck.
“She is hurting very badly, physically and emotionally,” Klaus said. “She now has a very different outlook on life. It will take her many many months to cope with this trauma.”
While Klaus and her family went through a traumatic event, she said she is just glad that her loved ones made it out alive.
“We were very fortunate,” Klaus said. “Prayers go out to all the families that have dealt with this terror and especially the ones that have lost a loved one.”
Jessica Tandy, a senior public relations major, doesn’t have a direct connection to the marathon bombing, but she participated in a major half-marathon just two days prior to the incident.
Tandy ran in Rock the Parkway, which runs along Ward Parkway in Kansas City, Mo., Saturday morning. A few days later, Tandy heard the news from Boston.
“Having just run in a huge city-wide race a couple of days earlier, hearing about the Boston Marathon bombing was very sobering,” Tandy said. “It was threatening to realize how many of my loved ones could have been affected had those same events happened here.”
Tandy said that she isn’t going to let Monday’s events affect her participation in future races.
“I’ll continue to run,” Tandy said. “It’s important to be safe and conscious of the potential for bad things to happen, but letting that potential change the way we live is giving power to fear.”
Two bombs exploded about 10 seconds and 100 yards apart Monday afternoon near the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
The explosions occurred about four hours into the race and two hours after the winners had crossed the finish line.
Rumors have circulated that a suspect seen on a business’ surveillance video was in custody.
According to the Associated Press, the FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office said no arrests have been made.