Had the legendary Paul Revere come from Ardmore, and still made his historic ride through Boston, he might have yelled out, "The Ardmoreites are coming" last week.

Had the legendary Paul Revere come from Ardmore, and still made his historic ride through Boston, he might have yelled out, "The Ardmoreites are coming" last week.

Four local adult runners, Steve Smalley, Dee Ann Marshall, Doug Davis and Tim Vandagriff, ran in last week's Boston Marathon, all placing in "the middle of the pack" as they all said.

"It was a dream come true," Smalley said. "I've been running for about 20 years, and it was a dream of mine to qualify and get to go to Boston. It's something I've always wanted to do. There were 750,000 spectators at the starting line, and they lined the entire 26 miles. There were runners from all over the world. It's a big worldwide event. The Boston Marathon is the oldest marathon. We were in the 112th running of the Boston Marathon."

"It's something I've always wanted to do," Marshall said. "I've tried for the last couple of years to qualify. It was just a great experience to go and be a part of it. It was unbelievable. The roar of the crowd was loud as you came down toward the finish line."

"It's a wonderful event, but you feel that you're only a real small part of it," Davis said. "But what an event it is. It was wonderful, and we all got to go be a part of it. It was exciting, and we all felt priveleged. It was humbling to see all those great athletes. And the crowd was 10 times the crowd at an OU home game."

"It's a big day in Boston," Vandagriff said. "The marathon is just bigger than life to get to go up there and run it. There's nothing else like it. You look around, and you see thousands of people around you. It's quite incredible. It's second to none. We're ready to go again."

For all four local marathoners, running is as much a part of their daily lives as breathing and sleeping, as well as providing some moments with family and friends.

"It's really part of my work day," said Vandagriff, who qualified for the Boston Marathon at a Houston race. "I get off at 4 p.m., and I come out (to Ardmore Regional Park)and run for about an hour or two. It's just become a daily part of my life. I really wouldn't know what to do without it."

"For me, it's something unique I can do with family," said Davis, who qualified for Boston in Tulsa. "I get to run with my daughter (Alex, who runs for Plainview's junior high team). That's a real privelege. I'm ovbviously not going to coach her in football. (Running) is something fathers and daughters can do together and maybe we'll get my wife (Laura) into it, too, sometime. She's taken an interest, and that's good. We all get excited about (running)."

"For me, it's just running with my friends," said Marshall, who qualified at a race in Memphis, Tenn. "We meet out (at Ardmore Regional Park) every Saturday, and it's something I always look forward to on the weekends. I also run to stay healthy. We adults run with our kids and other family. My dad, Bob Staples, started running in marathons 30 years ago, and my husband (Stan) runs. My sister, Donna Hale, lives in Norman and she runs, so we've been running together for the last 15 years. We go to marathons together. It's kind of a family thing."

"My son, Stephen, lives in Dallas, and he runs," said Smalley, who also qualified for Boston in a Tulsa race. "We've done a lot of marathons together. It's a great family thing to do. Like Dee Ann was saying, I run for the health standpoint. I think it's really good to get that health, exercise and fitness that comes from it. And about the popularity of running, I think running marathons are popular all across the country. I think more people are participating in marathons than ever before. We're already talking about next year, and we're talking to some other people from around here who might try to get in it. I hope us running in this will have a positive impact. I think the more people who hear about it, the more people will want to do it."

David Seeley, 221-6527