BOSTON (WHDH) – The world first knew Carlos Arredondo as the man in the cowboy hat. Five years ago, he sprinted into action when the bombs went off at the Boston Marathon finish line.

Carlos has attended the marathon as a spectator, a fan, an inspiration, but this year will be different. This year, Carlos will be running.

“It’s a special year for the survivors, as well as the first responders, most us got numbers from the BAA to participate, to donate to your favorite foundation,” he said.

Carlos chose his family’s foundation, a cause close to his heart after he lost both of his sons in the Iraq war, one to suicide.

“The foundation was formed in 2015, specifically, we focus on military related suicides,” Melida Arredondo, Carols’ wife, said.

At 57 years young, Carlos is training for his first marathon – he expects each one of the 26.2 miles on the marathon Monday to be powerful.

“It’s about doing it in honor and participating, which is the more amazing part of this event,” he said.

Especially when Carlos gets to the spots where the bombs went off.

“When we approach that area, it’s very emotional, just being there, but doing this myself for the first time, it’s emotional just to think about the other side of that terrible tragedy. The runners. I’m going to be a runner this time,” he said.

Carlos hinted that fans may see his cowboy hat. “The cowboy hat, definitely going to bring one – in my pocket, you never know”

Every year since the marathon bombing, Carlos has been at the Boston Marathon cheering runners that final stretch across the finish line. This year he’s hoping to cross the finish line himself.

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