A group of soldiers running the Boston Marathon wearing 40 pound backpacks in honor of fallen comrades came to the aid of bomb victims after the explosions took place.
Photographers captured images of the soldiers pulling back barricades and working to free spectators and runners who were trapped by debris.
Two of the soldiers, Army Sergeant Bernard Madore and 1st Lieutenant Steve Fiola, said they never expected to “mobilize in response to an attack in their hometown” but were ready when the situation demanded it.
The soldiers ran towards the explosions instead of running away. They reached the barricades so quickly that onlookers thought they had been assigned a protective role at the race to begin with.
In reality, they were there because they’d run the race to honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice to keep us free.
Photo credit: Military Friends Foundation