A Thunder Bay woman says she's grateful to be OK, after attending last week's Boston Marathon as a spectator, and being caught right between the two explosions.

Olivia Korkola, who studies at Berklee College of Music in Boston, was only a few feet away from the marathon’s finish line, when the first bomb went off.


Olivia Korkola of Thunder Bay goes to school in Boston and was headed to buy a t-shirt at a store located right in front of one of the bombs that went off at the marathon. (Supplied)

"I was about two stores, maybe 15-20 feet away when the first one went off," Korkola said.

"If I got there any sooner I would have been right in it, because it went off right in front of the shop I was going to go into — Marathon Sports."

Police redirected her

Korkola was headed toward a store to buy her mom a Boston Marathon t-shirt.

"After the first bomb went off everybody just started running in different directions," she said.

"It was really confusing. It just reeked of sulphur … and this huge grey cloud came down. And I looked beside me and everyone's screaming. It was insane. It was so loud."

Amid the chaos, Korkola said she unwittingly ran toward the site of the second bomb. But police blocked her path, just before it exploded.

"That one was much louder and definitely more fatal, from what I saw," Korkola said. "That's when it really kicked in that it was a terrorist attack."

She said it was a gory scene and she saw people bleeding, and with lost limbs.

"It's heartbreaking, and I've never been in an experience … this severe," Korkola said. "It just makes me feel so grateful that I'm okay"

She headed home the next day and was to return to Boston Monday morning.

Korkola said it would be difficult to go back.