Denver runners return from New York City Marathon disappointed

Runners return from NYC after marathon canceled

DENVER - Local runners returned home this weekend disappointed that the iconic New York City Marathon didn't happen.

"I characterized my initial reaction as very angry," said Jon Ahern as he returned to Denver International Airport Saturday.

Ahern and his friend Chuck Radford had flown to New York City Friday afternoon and learned about the cancellation when they had just arrived to their hotel.

"The decision to cancel the marathon was the right decision, but the timing of that decision was horrendous," said Ahern.

The men said the decision should've been made days earlier, before thousands of runners from around the world converged on New York.

"We just kind of stood there like what are we going to do," said Radford. "The officials in the city and the way the New York Roadrunners handled it left a bad taste in my mouth,"

New York City's Mayor spoke for the first time Saturday about his last minute decision. Michael Bloomberg said the marathon had become a divisive issue. He also said it was a "shame" that he had to make the call.

Denver runners like Jon Ahern said they're now out of money they had invested in their trip. Many are still waiting to hear what will happen to their $250 registration fee they paid for the marathon.

"When it's all said and done we probably each spent well over a thousand dollars getting out there and back and have no marathon to show for it," said Ahern.

Ahern and his friends made the most of their trip. They took part in a 26 mile run Saturday around Central Park. It proved to be therapeutic with thousands of other runners taking part as well.

"The community of runners and the spirit cannot be broken," said Chuck Radford. "You can cancel the marathon but you can't break our spirit."

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