Man who saved girl’s life at Marathon attacks shares story

Bruce Mendelsohn.
Jessica Rinaldi For The Boston Globe
Bruce Mendelsohn.

My name is Bruce Mendelsohn and on April 15, 2013, I saved Victoria McGrath’s life. The first bomb exploded just below me while I was at a post-race party with my younger brother (who completed the Marathon) at 667 Boylston St.

Within 30 seconds I was on the scene and wrapped a tourniquet around Victoria’s lower left leg. In one of the iconic photos of the Marathon bombings, Boston firefighter Jimmy Plourde cradles Victoria in his arms. I subsequently learned from Victoria’s surgeons that the tourniquet I applied saved her life. Over the past six months I have spoken to groups of all ages, sharing my unique story and an inspirational message of help, hope, and healing. That’s helped overcome some of the anger the bombing kindled in me.

As a veteran of 17 marathons, I would like to run the Boston Marathon to help bring my personal healing full circle — and to honor the other bombing victims who cannot run.


I’m applying for one of the available slots because I can envision no greater tribute to the victims, nor stronger statement to the perpetrators, that we are unbowed. On April 21, 2014, I hope to cross the finish line where just over a year before I saved the life of a young girl. Thank you for this opportunity and for your consideration.

Bruce Mendelsohn was selected to receive a special Marathon bib from the Boston Athletic Association after writing this essay.