Local residents caught in the chaos after blasts in Boston

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by NATALIE SWABY / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @NSwabyKing5

KING5.com

Posted on April 15, 2013 at 11:32 PM

Updated Monday, Apr 15 at 11:52 PM

SEATTLE - Many Washington residents, including a 78-year-old Bill Iffrig who had a very close call, were in Boston for the marathon.

Iffrig was about ten feet from the finish line when he was knocked off his feet by one of the blasts.
 
Mark Iffrig had been tracking his dad's progress throughout the race, but did not realize what had happened until he went on Facebook.
 
"He was right next to the explosion," said Mark Iffrig.
 
Monday night, Bill Iffrig appeared on CNN and described what happened.
 
"This tremendous explosion, it sounded like a bomb went off right next to me, sent shockwaves. It just hit my whole body and my legs started jittering," he said.
 
The runner fell to the ground and scraped his leg. He told his family he is okay. His grateful son said, "when something like that happens you are relieved, but you can't help but think about the other people hurt."
 
In the aftermath of the blasts, Colleen Engle of Seattle described confusion and chaos. Hotels were jam packed and restaurants ran out of food and closed, according to Engle.
 
"I don't feel safe going out there," said Engle in a phone interview from her Boston hotel room. "I don't know what I would have done if that had gone off an hour earlier."
 
An hour before the blasts her son Andy, who has special needs, finished the marathon. Andy's personal best time was followed by the terrible scene.
 
"It kind of reminds me almost of a war zone," said Engle.

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