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Counselor discusses facing fears in future

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - Many of the local runners who participated in yesterday's Boston Marathon are shocked by the events that unfolded.

Hours after learning of the events that unfolded after he crossed the finish line at the Boston Marathon, Scott Yakubek of Salem was still shaken.

"You know just thinking of all the people and their families and down at the finish line it is just, there are so many people. I just, I can't imagine what was going on there," he said.

In the coming days and weeks, clinical counselor Dr. Deirdre Petrich says runners who took part in the Boston Marathon may become fearful or anxious, especially when it comes time for them to go for a run.

"In order to decrease your anxiety, you don't want to avoid doing what you love. Although, it feels really good at first, to avoid doing the things that cause us stress that will only make your anxiety grow," Petrich says.

If you're a family member or friend of a runner, Petrich says it's best to listen to any fears and concerns they have about running again. While she says it's completely normal for people to feel anxious or fearful, they should keep in mind the likelihood of something like this happening again.

"Even though we are seeing these things highlighted in the news more often, they are not events that are occuring all the time. So, is it possible that something could happen like this to you? Yes. Is it plausible? No," Petrich says.

Like the days and weeks that followed September 11, Petrich says we'll begin to learn of the heroic efforts made by people at the marathon and those moments are what we, as a nation, should focus on as we await more answers.

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