A Dallas couple is returning to the Boston Marathon, because even though they finished the race last year, Kelly and Robert Watling still feel they have unfinished business.
The couple said prior to dating, both were already runners.
"I mean, that"s kind of where we started, our first day was a 5k challenge! And it's just kind of gone from there," said Kelli Watling.
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Robert proposed to Kelli after both finished the Chicago Marathon and decided if they qualified, they would get married after running the Boston Marathon.
"I thought it was going to make for a perfect evening, a perfect wedding," Robert Watling said. "The Boston Marathon is the most prestigious marathon in my opinion."
Both said the day was perfect. Robert ran his best time, and Kelli close to hers.
It was just 20 minutes after Kelli crossed the finish line, the first bomb went off.
"I was in the salon getting my hair and makeup done when more or less the news broke and everything kind of unfolded. Everything was literally taking place blocks down from where we were," she said.
The couple said they considered canceling their wedding given then uncertainty and chaos, but decided to go through with it.
"We weren't sure if it was a terrorist act or not. But if it was, we certainly weren't going to let them derail our plans," she said.
Still, she said, the situation was unnerving at times.
"You're dealing with all sorts of emotions, from excitement and elation that you finished the race. And here you are in the park about to proceed with your wedding, but in the background you can see all the activity going on. Literally three blocks away. We had the sirens of the SWAT cars and police surrounding our park- it was very surreal," she said.
After their wedding the couple decided not to go back this year to the marathon. But time has a way of changing things.
"Just the outcome of the events, we really felt like we needed to return. Not only just to bring closure for ourselves, but I think it will be great to see all the progress that's been made, just to be a part of everything we can," she said.
Not only that, the couple will be running with one more in tow.
"So I will be running for two," she laughs.
The couple is expecting their first baby, a daughter, in the fall.
"I think it's going to be, of the Boston Marathons, probably the most special that's ever been run and will probably ever be run. I can't think of the waves of emotions that are going to hit when we cross the finish line," he said.
The couple said they visit Boston with their daughter one day and explain to her their story.
"She'll probably be running out of the womb," he said. "I think we'll have a lot of memories to share with her. I'm fortunate for that."