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Runner Thanks Those Who Helped Save His Life At Baltimore Half Marathon

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Mary Bubala joined WJZ in December 2003. She now anchors the 4-4:30...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)—A Maryland man collapses near the finish line of the Baltimore Half Marathon.

Mary Bubala has more on the incredible race to save his life.  

He started off the race strong. But when 55-year-old Bob Pohl was just 200 feet from the finish line of the Baltimore Half Marathon, he collapsed, going into cardiac arrest.

Baltimore City police Lt. Colonel Ross Buzzuro was running right behind him.

“I knew it was something serious even though I was close to the finish line. That became distant second,” Lt. Buzzuro said.

On Thursday, everyone who raced to save Pohl gathered at the finish line, so he could personally thank them.

“I am totally overcome by the behavior of the folks that day. Not just by the professional medical staff, but by the on lookers, spectators and the people who helped out and the runners. For the runners to stop that close to a finish line to help somebody out is just amazing,” Pohl said.

The marathon organizers have a team of 250 medical personnel stationed through the course. And that day they were seconds away from Pohl with a defibrillator.

“Shocked him once, got his heart beat back,” said Dr. Cynthia Webb, Union Memorial. “He was still in critical condition, but he was alive.”

“We wheeled him over the finish line so we all finished together as a group,” said a runner. “Glad to see him today on his road to recovery.”

Pohl says genetics played a roll in his heart attack. He’s in rehabilitation now and hopes to run another marathon some day.

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