CCC president says she has no marathon safety concerns

By Alisa Boswell
CMI staff writer

Clovis Community College President Becky Rowley said on the day of last year’s Boston Marathon, she received numerous phone calls to her office at the college with people asking if she was OK.

At the 2013 Boston Marathon, two explosions went off near the finish line of the event, killing three people and injuring more than 100 others.

“I got back to my office and my assistant asked if I could please send out an e-mail to everyone that I was here, because people kept calling to ask if I had gone (to the marathon),” said Rowley, who has been running in the Boston Marathon every other year since 1998. “It (the 2013 incident) still is kind of a shocking thing. When you see articles about people who are still recovering from injuries, it really does kind of make you angry.”

Rowley said she does not have any safety concerns about going back to the marathon this year, because marathon officials have been sending out informative e-mails about security increases.

She said Boston may be one of the safest marathons around now, adding that it is important to her to attend this year because she wants to be part of the spirit of camaraderie, which is likely to be even stronger this year.

“The only thing that phases me is it’s going to be crowded. But that’s not about safety; it’s just about trying to maneuver the course with so many people,” she said.

This year’s Boston Marathon — the 118th — is April 21.

Rowley said she runs in one to two marathons a year — including Chicago, Oklahoma City, Albuquerque and Bar Harbor, Maine, but there is something special about the Boston marathon

“You sort of feel like it’s a privilege to be there,” she said. “The crowds are great. People treat you like you’re a real athlete. When you finish the race, people don’t even ask you your time; they just say, ‘oh wow, you finished.’ Any other place I’ve run before, the whole city is not behind it like in Boston.”

“There are people there for the first time, who will probably never get to go again, because they’ll probably never meet their qualifying time again and there’s also the best there too,” she added.

Rowley said with marathons as big as the one in Boston, her goal is usually to just completely finish and within a decent time.

“I like the training process as much as anything,” Rowley said. “There’s just a certain discipline to get ready for it. I’m competitive in my age division.”