• Proud to be from Pittsburgh: Supporting all runners at the Boston Marathon

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    PITTSBURGH - When Channel 11 met up with Saint Vincent College Coach Kevin Wanichko, he was back at work with his women's track team just one day after the Boston Marathon.

    "It was a huge honor," Wanichko said. "I mean, Boston is known as the prestigious race."

    He trained for more than four months for his first Boston Marathon, at times running up to 20 miles a day. However, he never trained for what happened in the final stretch. He set the scene for Channel 11.

    "I turned onto Boylston Street and you know that's the famous street, you can see the finish line from there," he started.

    He said his eyes were locked on the finish line and he was ready to be done running, when he noticed another runner.


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    "I saw him probably about 300 meters from the finish, staggering a little bit," Wanichko said. "Then, he went down on the curb."

    Without a thought, he turned his focus from finishing the race to helping a stranger.

    "I helped him up, put him on my shoulder," Wanichko remembered. "I took him about 100 meters and then another man came on the other side of him, helped me get him into the finish."

    Wanichko told us there's a bond between runners that drove his instinct to respond to another runner. 

    "Running is just not comfortable," he said. "It's a lot of pain. So, people know what other runners are going through."

    He said even though he never got to speak to his fellow finisher, he knew they both had the same mission in the end.

    "I didn't want to see someone get that close and not make it," said Wanichko. "My goal was to help him get to the finish."


     

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