Boston Marathon Tragedy

All Athletic Trainers Safe After Boston Marathon Tragedy


April 23, 2013

Dear Jim Thornton, Paul Ullucci and all NATA members,
We would like to thank NATA, EATA and all of our colleagues and friends from across the country and around the world for all of their well wishes during and following last week’s tragic event at the Boston Marathon. We are happy to announce that all of our volunteer athletic trainers and students were accounted for before departing the scene last Monday.

You will be proud to know that our Finish Line Medical Team consisting of physicians, athletic trainers and athletic training students responded heroically to the blast site without regard for their own personal safety to assist, treat and triage the victims of this horrific act. These brave medical professionals worked hand in hand with Boston EMS, Fire and Police officials in what can only be described as a war zone. There were more than 130 volunteer athletic trainers involved at all levels of medical care for the race that day, and every one of them reacted and responded with utmost professionalism.

We are prouder than ever to call ourselves athletic trainers. We were able to demonstrate to the world the courage and compassion we have for our fellow man in the face of such a catastrophic event.

The entire marathon medical team and Boston EMS responded with a coordinated effort to evaluate, treat, triage and transport victims to area hospitals. The way we all worked in concert in response to this disaster was simply incredible.

We are making sure every single one of our volunteers gets whatever support they need and have reached out to them all with our deepest appreciation for their heroic actions during this tragic event.

Please continue to pray for all of the victims of this senseless act of violence.
Chris Troyanos, ATC
Medical Coordinator
BAA Boston Marathon
Brian M. FitzGerald, BSN, ATC
Finish Line Physician / Athletic Trainer Coordinator
Brent Hamula, ATC
Medical Supply Coordinator
Frank Mastrangelo, ATC, EMT 
Finish Area Sweep Team Coordinator
Jon Dana, ATC
Finish Line Chute Team Co-Captain
Larry Venis, MA, ATC
Finish Line Chute Team Co-Captain





April 18, 2013

Dear athletic training community,
I am compelled to write to you today following the horrific events in Boston yesterday. We live in a world that seems to progress in so many ways and deteriorate in other ways at the same time. I was captivated by the quick response of the EMS, Police and Fire personnel as well as the federal state and local services following the detonation of the two bombs. The expertise of these individuals as the event unfolded was impressive.

As I watched the national media coverage, I was terrified to think about the athletic trainers and athletic training students who would be in close proximity of those blasts. As information came in, I was relieved to learn that not only was everyone safe, but that in true AT fashion, they rolled up their sleeves and went to work helping those injured in this senseless act. I have heard individual stories about yesterday’s experiences of these brave ATs. At that point no one knew if there were other dangerous devices in the area, but this did not stop our first responders from taking action. Their bravery and representation of all our profession inspires me and confirms what I already knew about the character of athletic trainers. We always have and continue to place the ones in need above ourselves.

I ask those of us who were not involved to acknowledge the courageous nature of our fellow professionals and use that inspiration to make this profession even better.  Alongside the feelings of terror and hopelessness we all experienced as the events unfolded also comes the pride of being associated with such an honorable profession.

I encourage the ATs involved in this event yesterday to seek emotional assistance if needed. I am concerned about the students who were there, as well as their peers and families at home.  We need to keep a close watch on the needs of those in our charge and get them the help they might need in the coming weeks and months.

I pray that Almighty God will bless the recovery of those injured physically and emotionally, that those grieving will be comforted, and that the anguish felt from the loss of a loved one will someday be assuaged. I hope you will join me with thoughts and prayers in any way you feel comfortable and in keeping with your own traditions.

Please read the letter below from District One Paul Ullucci, that provides more information.
Jim Thornton, ATC
NATA President





April 18, 2013

NATA and District One members,
I can now report that no athletic trainers or athletic training students were physically injured during the Boston Marathon bombings. Fortunately for the injured, many of our colleagues and friends were able to provide prompt and immediate care for those who were impacted by days event. I am told that we should have great pride in our profession for the way those working the event responded. They were described as “going above and beyond” and “heroic.”

As you can imagine, some of our friends and students were exposed to some absolutely unprecedented scenes of trauma and devastation and will require our support to help them process these events. I continue to pray for them. NATA and District One will continue to provide them with as much support as we can, including creating crisis teams to help them deal with the emotional trauma of what they witnessed.

If you have been appropriately trained and are willing to volunteer to help our colleagues emotionally process this tragedy, please email me so I can put you in touch with those in need. I will be coordinating crisis response teams with those athletic trainers who were present at this tragedy. Any athletic trainer or student who wishes to talk to a person from the crisis response team or who feels they would benefit from a member of the crisis team going to their school to help should contact me at (401) 433-1500 or
Paul Ullucci, Jr., DPT, ATC, SCS
NATA District One Director

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