Friends, family seek word on Oregonians at Boston Marathon

Friends, family seek word on Oregonians at Boston Marathon »Play Video
Brad Gissel (left) said his mother Nancy (right) finished the Boston Marathon shortly before the first explosion. The Gissel family in Boston is OK, Brad said.

EUGENE, Ore. - As news out of Boston alarmed the nation, family and friends awaited word from the 351 runners from Oregon, including 24 from Eugene, who were registered to participate in the Boston Marathon.

Bob Coll at Eugene Running Company said two of his employees ran the Boston Marathon. They're both OK, he said.

Coll said even though all his friends have phoned him to say they're safe, the event has been emotionally draining.

"Just the nature of running a marathon is such an emotional event for people," Coll said. "To have a tragedy unfold as part of the event just magnifies the emotional aspect of it."

Nancy Gissel, 54, finished the race shortly before the first explosion, her son Brad told KVAL News. She got separated from her husband and daughter, but Brad said he had been in touch with both his mother and father and they are fine.

Craig Leon of Eugene, who placed 10th in the men's race, and Shalane Flanagan and Kara Goucher of Portland, who placed 4th and 6th in the women's race, all sent out messages on Twitter saying they were OK.

Eugene Marathon officials met to discuss how to respond. The marathon is less than 2 weeks away.

The Eugene Marathon issued this statement:

"Our thoughts and prayers are with all of those affected by the tragic events that took place in Boston today. We have a close bond with our friends and colleagues in the marathon running community and we will support them however we can. The Eugene Marathon will take place as scheduled and we are working with city officials, law enforcement officials and first responders to ensure the safety of our participants and spectators."

Google set up a site to help people report and locate people in the wake of the bombing.

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