Ray Allen hit hard by Boston Marathon tragedy
MIAMI — What happened in Boston hit Ray Allen hard.
The Miami Heat guard had played the previous five years with the Boston Celtics. With his mother having run three Boston Marathons and his wife two, Allen said he often has been at the finish line of the race, where two bombs went off Monday, killing three and injuring more than 170.
“One of the things that I have played over and over in mind is how we would have been sitting at the finish line waiting on my mom and my wife to cross the finish line,’’ Allen said before Wednesday’s regular-season finale against the Orlando Magic at AmericanAirlines Arena. “This year, they would have been running (the race) if we were in Boston. So that presented some anxiety when I thought about it.’’
Allen signed with the Heat as a free agent last summer. He said his mother, Flo-Allen Hopson, ran last year although his wife, Shannon Allen, didn’t.
With the many people Allen knows in Boston, he's not surprised he has been touched directly by the tragedy.
“We have a family friend that was there that ran the marathon, and she’s in intensive care now because she lost her leg,’’ Allen said.
Allen said a friend of his, Pat Lyons, owns several Boston restaurants. A manager at one was Krystle Marie Campbell, 29, one of the three dead. Allen also said a chef at the same restaurant lost at least one leg.
Allen said he was on the phone with Lyons on Wednesday. He suggested his friend should run the Boston Marathon next year in memory of Campbell, and Allen said Lyons agreed.
When the tragedy happened, Allen was in Cleveland preparing for a game Monday night against the Cavaliers. He believes he could have been at the Boston Marathon that day if he were still with the Celtics.
“Standing right there and sitting in the bleachers,’’ Allen said of where he was at previous events in Boston with his children while waiting for his mother and wife to finish. “So I’ve been sitting there.’’
Allen said he felt “just anxiety’’ when watching the news on television. He said he knew right after it happened about the likelihood of having a connection to some victims.
Allen, an avid runner, expects to run a marathon when he retires but doesn’t know if he will do the one in Boston. He does not believe what happened Monday will deter his mother and wife from participating in the event in the future.
“I don’t think it would dissuade them from running,’’ said Allen, whose family members have run the race to help raise money for diabetes, which inflicts Allen’s son, Walker. “I imagine the amount of people running the marathon will double (next year due to tributes).’’
Chris Tomasson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @christomasson.