Trauma for Grauer becomes turning point


Kim Grauer at the finish line of the Boston marathon with her dad’s name on her jersey.

Soraya Elhoumaidi, Reporter

It started off as any ordinary day for Kim Grauer. She arrived on a beautiful day to run in the 2013 Boston Marathon. She was there to complete her goal of running across that finish line for her father who died 12 days prior to the race due to liver disease.

“I remember the last thing I said to my father,” Kim Grauer said. “No matter what happens, I will run Boston.”

Grauer was devastated after her father’s death, but she knew that she had to fulfill her promise to her dad.

After 15-20 miles she was really determined to finish this race. She texted her mother and brother to stay at the finish line no matter what happens, so that they wouldn’t miss her crossing the finish line. Her family stood there for hours waiting to take a picture of her crossing the finish line, but little did she know that a simple request would cause a lifetime of guilt.

She continued running and realized that people stopped cheering. There was no noise. Then she started to slow down. The shock and horror on people’s faces said enough.

“It’s something that I had never seen before,” Grauer said.

An ambulance and police cars came racing down the course. “I remembered reading about this in one of my books,” Grauer said. “so I knew that if an ambulance came down the running course then something terrible had happened”.

She kept running until she found a police officer that could explain what was going on. The police officer told her that the entire finish line has been blown up and lots of people were dead and hurt.

The runners had to keep moving despite the will to see their families. All Grauer could think about was getting to her family. For hours, she didn’t know if they were dead or alive. She was shaking and suffered from hypothermia as she waited to hear from her family.

She received a panicked voicemail from her brother. “Stop running. Stop running,” Grauer’s brother who was in between the two bombs that went off said. “Just don’t go to the finish line, but I will find you.”

After hours of worrying about her family and the immense guilt that she felt, her brother found her. She reunited with her family and felt so thankful that they were still alive. Til this day she still feels guilty for making her family wait there.

Grauer went back to the Boston Marathon the following year to finish the race for her father and the American liver association.

For many, this traumatic event would cause negative thinking, but not for Kim Grauer. She told herself that she could either take the high road or the low road. She choose the high road. Because of that brave decision, she still runs in marathons and is able to live a normal, happy life.

Kim Grauer returned in 2014 to compete the Boston marathon.