LACKAWANNA COUNTY -- Tuesday marks the one year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing tragedy. Several runners from northeastern Pennsylvania who were there for the marathon last year plan to go back and run again.
Tony Cerminaro has run the Boston Marathon 19 times. He says the tragedy last year has motivated him to continue running. This year he says he's running to win in his division but he's also running for Boston. It's a year later, but the memories are as clear as day to Cerminaro who was by the finish line at the Boston Marathon last year when the explosions went off.
"When I turned around and looked and saw the smoke, some guy running by me had blood all over his shirt. I looked at the guy next to me and said 'something isn't right here,'" said Tony Cerminaro.
He had just finished the race and was a block away when he heard the explosion behind him. His wife who usually comes to races was home in Jermyn watching and waiting for Tony to call.
"I couldn't understand why wasn't I hearing anything from him. A nervous wreck, a nervous wreck," said Alice Cerminaro.
Tony did call. He came in second in his division. However, his good news was overshadowed by the tragedy. This year Alice says she plans to come along.
"We can't dwell on what happened. Just have to move forward that's all," she said.
After 93 marathons, Tony has a room full of awards. He says the bowl he won last year at the Boston Marathon is the most meaningful, because it comes with the most memories.
"Everything that happened, that's what you think about. Everything that happened (was) bad. I don't even like the think about it," said Cerminaro.
This year Tony expects to see heightened security and more police protection.
“A lot of stuff you used to take before you can't take no more. Clear plastic bags. It's going to be different." said Cerminaro
Karen McGlaughlin from Kingston is one of the 37,000 runners who are also expected to cross the starting line. She's running for a reason.
"All winter while I was training in this horrible weather, all I thought about was, I'm doing it for them. I'm doing it to show that we're not afraid that we'll come back and it's going to be even better," said McGlaughlin
Several other runners are running the Boston Marathon this year say last year’s tragedy has only fueled support. The runners say next week’s race is an experience that runners will be flocking to.
The Boston Marathon will be Monday on April 21.