College of Liberal Arts

Pushing Forward

Published Jan. 6, 2014

By Jessica Sinn

On a sunny spring afternoon, Kate Jones was anxiously waiting to see her husband cross the finish line at the most prestigious marathon in the world.

Then came the boom.

Cheers of excitement immediately turned into blood-curdling screams as hundreds of people rushed from the clouds of smoke. Lost in the sea of chaos, Jones frantically searched for her husband, desperately hoping he wasn’t among the many victims sprawled on the bloodied streets.

“All I wanted was to find my husband, but I got lost in the crowd,” says the 36-year-old elementary school teacher who requested her real name not be used in this story. “I kept looking over my shoulder, waiting for another bomb to go off as hundreds of people were screaming at me to move.”

Since the Boston Marathon in April 2013, she continues to experience that terrifying scene in the safety of her own home.

“I sometimes have the same dream where a bomb is about to go off, and I’m trying to run for my life, but I’m paralyzed in fear,” says Jones, who is also a marathon runner. “I’m also very sensitive to loud, sudden noises. Fourth of July will never be the same.”

It’s difficult to imagine what the future holds for Jones and many others who have endured such horrors. How many will suffer from a crippling constellation of flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety and other symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)?

Read the full story on Life & Letters.