MIAMI (CBSMiami) – From Boston to Brickell, runners are coming together to honor the victims of Monday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon.
The Baptist Health South Florida Brickell Run Club hosted a “Silent Run for Boston” Tuesday.
More than 600 people participated in the special tribute along Brickell Avenue and Biscayne Blvd.
After the run, Ken Bereski put on a shirt that said “4:09:43”, the time on the marathon clock when the bomb went off.
“I finished at just about this time on the clock,” Bereski told CBS 4’s Lauren Pastrana. “I was really blessed that I crossed just before.”
Bereski has completed the Boston Marathon 12 times. The IT consultant is from Boston, but now lives in Miami.
He said he traveled to Boston for the 117th running of the marathon, and had just crossed the finish line when the bomb went off.
He was back to running the very next day.
“Seeing my new city and my old city come together, I just wish it didn’t take something as horrendous as what happened yesterday to make that happen,” he said.
Organizers had special race bibs made for the athletes who participated in Tuesday’s tribute run.
“Runners have all asked what can we do? What can we do? I think this is one step in showing Boston we care. We love them. We’re supporting them,” said Frankie Ruiz, Chief Running Officer with U.S. Road Sports and Entertainment.
Miami police officers helped direct traffic as runners crossed the busy street.
After the 3.3 mile run, the athletes posed for a group picture to express their solidarity, holding a sign that read, “Miami RUNS for Boston”.
“We can’t let people stop us from doing what we love,” Rachel Shapiro said. “It only makes us stronger and we have to keep on going.”
Shapiro is a 2009 graduate of Boston University. Her mother has completed the Boston Marathon before and ran with her Tuesday.
Jose Sotolongo, the Executive Director of the Miami-Dade Sports Commission, has finished the Boston Marathon 5 times.
He brought his medals to the memorial run Tuesday.
“I plan to run Boston again and again and again,” he told Pastrana. “Every time it’s going to be for the poor victims of the tragedy.”
Tuesday’s run turned around in front of the American Airlines Arena, the starting point for the ING Miami Marathon, a qualifier for the big Boston race.
Bereski said he hopes people sign up for more 5Ks and marathons in the future.
“Do it as a show of support,” he said. “Don’t let this kind of thing dampen the human spirit.”
Proceeds from t-shirts sold following the “Silent Run for Boston” will be donated to charities helping the victims, organizers said.