6 months after heart attack, Boston Marathon runner eyes 2023 return

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Meghan Roth watched the Boston Marathon unfold on a bright, sunny morning Monday in Massachusetts. She did so on a television set in her Edina apartment complex, where it was blustery and cold outside.

It didn’t matter to Roth because every day is a beautiful day for her.

“It’s Boston Marathon Monday, which is very exciting,” the 34-year-old said Monday morning, just over six months after suffering a heart attack at about the 7.4-mile mark of the Boston Marathon.

“I’ve kind of gone through a rollercoaster of emotions,” she said while watching the marathon telecast. “So it’s emotional … it’s emotional, hard.”

But her spirits were lifted when she received a surprise phone call from the Boston Marathon course. One of the people who helped save Roth’s life last year, fellow marathon runner and paramedic Nick Haney, said he was running the mile from 7 to 8 in her honor.

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“So he was carrying his phone during the race and FaceTimed me,” she told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS. “So he was at mile 7 … and was able to have me on the phone as he ran through 7.4. … So, pretty special moment because that’s where I collapsed during the race.”

Haney is a remarkable multi-tasker. He helped save Roth’s life last year, called her on his phone during this year’s race and still managed to run the Boston Marathon in under three hours.

Roth is remarkable in her own right. The one-time U.S. Olympic team marathon qualifier recovered from her heart attack and so far has a clean bill of health from her doctors who still don’t know what caused her collapse.

“They said my heart still looks beautiful,” she said. “Still very strong and all the imaging looks great.”

They also haven’t found any structural problems or genetic issues. So Roth is back to running with an implanted device that could jumpstart her heart if necessary. She’s is hoping that will never be necessary.

“Hopefully be able to come back to marathoning and if anything, for 2023 (in Boston), just to run it as a fun race and to be out there again is really exciting,” she said. “If anything this just makes me even more excited for next year.”