- US Marine veteran Micah Herndon crawled across the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday, after his legs gave out late in the race.
- Herndon’s goal was to finish the race in under three hours, in order to qualify for the New York City Marathon. While he didn’t make that goal, he has been given a spot in the November marathon anyway.
- The Ohio native was running in honour of the three friends he lost in an IED attack in Afghanistan in 2010.
- Visit INSIDER.com for more stories.
A Marine veteran crawled across the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday, after his legs gave out late in the race.
Micah Herndon, of Tallmadge, Ohio, persisted because he was running in honour of three friends who died in an IED attack in Afghanistan.
“The pain that I was going through is nothing compared to the pain that they went through,” Herndon told CBS Boston.
In an interview with the “Today” show Wednesday morning, Herndon said he was still recovering from the 26.2-mile race, but that he plans to get back to running soon, which has been a sort of therapy for him since coming back from military life.
The Tallmadge, Ohio native was on pace for most of the race to complete the marathon in under three hours, a goal Herndon set for himself so he could enter the New York City marathon.
But in the last few miles of the race, both of his legs locked up.
As Marines, Herndon said that they are trained to “adapt and overcome” so that’s just what he did. Instead of running across the finish line, he dropped to his knees and crawled.
“I’m still very upset that I didn’t get my goal time, but once I realised that wasn’t attainable I had one goal in mind, and that was to finish on my own, whatever that may be,” he said on the “Today” show.
— Good Morning America (@GMA) April 17, 2019
Despite his longer race time, Herndon has since been given a spot to run in the New York City Marathon, Robin Roberts told him on “Good Morning America.”
“Whoever set that up, thank you,” he responded, surprised by the news. “I will be ready by the fall, believe that, that’s for sure. Wow.”
He ran the race in honour of his fallen friends
On January 9, 2010, Herndon was riding in a vehicle with fellow Marines Matthew Ballard and Mark Juarez, and British journalist Rupert Hamer when they struck a 400-pound IED, Herndon told the Washington Post.
Juarez and Hamer died on impact. Ballard, who Herndon described as his best friend, died later of his injuries.
Herndon told “GMA” he repeated their names while he was running to keep him going.
Herndon went on to survive two more IED attacks, and told The Post he got into running as a way to deal with the tough transition back to civilian life.
“There’s a reason why I’m here,” he told the paper. “I’m just trying to find out what that reason is for.”
- Read more stories about the Boston Marathon on INSIDER:
- A dancer who lost her leg in the Boston marathon bombing was hit by a car just blocks from the 2013 explosion
- The first American woman to win the Boston Marathon in 33 years waited for another racer to use the bathroom during the race and still won by 4 minutes
- The winner of the Boston Marathon explains how to complete a marathon, from signing up to crossing the finish line
- A look inside Boston Marathon champion Des Linden’s daily routine, which features 12-mile morning runs and two breakfasts
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