What local organizers can learn from events similar to the Boston Marathon

In the wake of the tragedy that occurred Monday in Boston, we rightly reflect on those who were innocent victims of selfishness and cowardice. Too, we as a nation, justly stood on the giants before us who have spoken great words to remind us that even in moments like this, we can find heroes and heroines.

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'" --Mr. Rogers

I, however, cannot help but recollect the thoughts of some of my peers who have participated in events similar to the Boston Marathon. Here, in our own city--even within the past few weeks--San Diego has had the Neon Run and Run or Dye.

Many athletic events such as all of these are of a cattle call nature that bring hundreds if not thousands of people together in a popular, and somewhat condensed area.

As a freelance writer who writes about Mission Valley, I sought to interview Rachel Hoffert and Hiyasmin Vargas, friends of mine whose opinions I valued. As I began to ask questions via Facebook inbox, I realized there was a recurring unsolicited but welcomed theme: the lack of organization by the Run or Dye organization itself.

In the April 7th and April 8th interviews, they wrote the following:

Vargas wrote,

"It was a little disorganized. There were so many people that we were done with the walk/run there were still people who haven't even started."

Hoffert, too, would agree.

"Too many people...And in the end had people that was not in the race there too, in the race."

For the hundreds who turned out, there was only one person Hoffert saw giving away water.

Though I do not seek a scapegoat for the tragic occurrences that will forever haunt our minds and associate heartbreak when we hear, "Boston Marathon," there are some lessons to be learned. These lessons may seem administrative but every little bit helps.

At the same time, we as bystanders, as passers by, must also remember to accept accountability. Let's be aware of our surroundings. Firefighters, policemen, FBI, First Responders, Medics and the like, though heroes to many of us are still...only human.

"We stand on the shoulders of the giants before us" -- Isaac Newton/Bernard of Chatres


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