He had gone to the Boston Marathon to raise money for cancer research after his mom died in November. He managed to raise $5,500, but never got to finish the race.
"In the perspective of things, it doesn't mean a whole lot, but the race for me was bittersweet. I was able to raise money for a cure, and today is definitely symbolic of far more than that," he said. "The city of Boston was remarkable in the way that everyone stepped up. People in the crowd were helping other runners and letting strangers stay in their homes that night."
Boehm didn't run with his phone on him that day, but was able to borrow a phone to text his wife and tell her to meet him at a specific location. He was relieved when he received a response.
"The race came to a stop real quick. The word I got was that there was an accident up ahead, so my first thought was that a runner had a health issue or something. I didn't know it was as serious as it was," he said. "I wasn't having a great day running, and I was worried about my wife who I knew was waiting at the finish line."
Boehm's wife, Kara, was also running at Sunday's event, and said the feeling is still surreal.
"I was by myself, somehow in between the two bombs. I wasn't sure what to do after that. It didn't feel real at the time," she said. "I just didn't know what to do. We tried to react the best way we could."
Wendy Lucas, of Winfield, watched her 11-year-old daughter run in Sunday's event, and said it's difficult as a parent to explain what happened.
"We watched the news coverage, and it's overwhelming. It's hard to explain to your kids," she said. "I didn't want to scare her, but this is the world we live in."
Lucas said her daughter feels better knowing that she's donated money and ran for the cause, and said she was happy to see so many West Virginians reaching out in a time of need.
"It's personal," she said. "Just because it's America, it's personal."
Reach Mackenzie Mays at mackenzie.m...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4814.