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Letters | Terror at the Marathon

Next year on Boylston

Mike Murphy, a Newton firefighter, carried an American flag down Boylston Street after observing a moment of silence last Monday.

ROBERT F. BUKATY/ASSOCIATED PRESS

Mike Murphy, a Newton firefighter, carried an American flag down Boylston Street after observing a moment of silence last Monday.

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For 117 years the Boston Athletic Association has offered athletes the physical challenge of replicating Pheidippides’s decision to run the distance from Marathon to Athens, on a bloody late-summer day in 490 BC. But next year, for the first time, the athletes who take part in the 118th Boston Marathon will, in effect, be accepting his actual mission, which was to convey a one-word message: “Nikomen,” or “We have won.”

Jape Shattuck

Newport, R.I.

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