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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Carlos Arredondo Hailed As Hero For Bombing Response

Carlos Arredondo, center, helps wheel an injured man, now identified as  Jeff Bauman, 27. He had a double amputation at Boston Medical Center. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Carlos Arredondo, center, helps wheel an injured man, now identified as Jeff Bauman, 27. He had a double amputation at Boston Medical Center. The photo has been cropped to hide the severity of Bauman’s injuries. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Carlos Arredondo is “the man in the cowboy hat” from the now-famous photo taken after the explosions at the Boston Marathon on Monday.

A photo of Alex and Brian. (Courtesy of the Arrendondo Family)

Alex and Brian Arredondo are pictured in a family photo. (Courtesy Arredondo family)

He’s also seen in Boston Globe sports producer Steve Silva’s video from the scene, fighting his way through the barriers alongside the marathon route to reach a gravely injured man (go to 1:50 to see him).

Arredondo was at the Boston Marathon to support “Tough Ruckers” – military members who run in full military gear to honor fallen comrades.

His son, Alex, died in Iraq in 2004. When marines came to deliver that news to Arredondo, he locked himself in his van and set it on fire. Those marines rescued him.

Arredondo would also lose his only other son, Brian, who never got over the loss of his brother and committed suicide at the age of 24.

Arredondo could not save his sons’ lives, but on Monday he saved someone else’s.

The gravely injured man in the photo is 27-year-old Jeff Bauman. He had to have both lower legs amputated, but his father says he’s recovering.

Note: After the show we received word that the local youth hockey program in Concord, N.H., where Bauman’s parents live, is raising money for the family. You can see more information here, or make a donation here.


  • Carlos Arredondo, peace activist who helped rescue victims of the Boston Marathon bombing.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
  • http://www.facebook.com/julane.grant Julane Grant

    When Alexander died and Carlos was so injured from the fire, Cindy Sheehan had sent out a request for donations to Carlos. He sent me a thank you letter with a copy of a letter from Alexander. I was so extremely impressed with the intelligence of his son. He wrote as if he had a college degree and the heart of an angel. I always wanted to tell Carlos what a very special son he had, I am sure he knows that but I wanted so much to tell him that now we all knew it. It breaks my heart that he has lost Brian, also. Carlos is a very special man, and I was so pleased to hear him on Here and Now this morning. I hope he checks this page to read this. Julane Grant in Portland, Oregon

    • Create Peace

      I can cut and paste your note to his and his wife’s facebook page, if you wish.  I was with Carlos when he was attacked at a peace march in 2007 in DC.  I met him in 2005 over the letter, too. In DC after Katrina.  Peace. Hannah

      • http://www.facebook.com/julane.grant Julane Grant

        I would appreciate that so much Hannah

        • Create Peace


      • http://www.facebook.com/coletteleisen Colette Leisen

        is there a place to donate for carlos? i would appreciate knowing..

      • Quiltsappraised

         I have been looking for Carlos and his wife.  I am a Massachusetts coordinator for the Home of the Brave Quilt Project.  We are not given names or addresses of family members only the fallen soldiers names.  If you can reach them, please, please ask them to request a quilt at http://www.homeofthebravequilts.com.  we have a special quilt for them.  Julie

  • Ashrut86

    This is an amazing story I am crying I an my crying in my car now. What a great selfless act!

  • Diane

    This may be one of the most beautiful interviews I have ever heard.  It baffles me how something so heartbreaking can be so uplifting at the same time.  Carlos is hope to me.  Thank you for sharing such a powerful interview!

  • michelle carter

    Carlos Arrendondo said “Marines are angels in camouflage”.  I say Carlos Arrendondo is an angel in a cowboy hat.  What an amazing person.

  • http://openid.aol.com/rlupodimare RAOUL

    This interview was moving. This is how real Americans act.

    • eraserhead12

      I wonder if these people even consider him an American: http://warisacrime.org/carlos . wonder if they recognize the man they beat up bloody, for being a pacifist.

  • Skipnichols

    There are amazing, heroic people all around us. Carlos Arredondo is one of those people. 

  • J D Morris

    To Carlos,

    Gods Peace and Gods Speed in your mission to find the reason for your lose. You continue to do good in saving lives and your sons are testament. They would not have this chance of life had not been for you and their way to our father in Heaven. There are no guarentees in life as there are no clear answers, but in your faith please carry on in your quest, for the sake of your sons and God has a reason for your determination. My father was a Marine, I served in Iraq at age 50, in in South Pacific at 18. Don’t give up and humble yourself amid all the publicity to look deep for the answer to your prayers.
    God Bless men like you, Carlos.


  • Janishallert

    To Mr. Arredondo,   I was watching the Boston bombings  on TV, and you stood out so much and captured my attention with your truly heroic and passionate act of helping and saving lives of the poor victims especially Jeff Bauman!!! Sir, I have read your story of the unimaginable loss you have suffered in your own life!!! I also know about loss of loved ones and unless someone has been through it, they will never understand!  Please, try to remember, we never understand at the time of our grief that there is a reason we go on, but Sir, you now have seen your reason, through the memories and honor of your sons, who are always with you, by your side forever, you were there to help save others!!! Angels work in weird ways, and now you have a whole country behind you!!  I wish nothing but the best for you, and would like to Thank You for inspiring me and so many others!!  I wish you, peace of mind and lots of love the rest of your life!!!!!   Janis Hallert

  • http://twitter.com/girlonavespa21 Erin in PDX

    I had tears in my eyes during my morning commute to work today as I listened to Carlos’s story. An amazing revelation of the impact a man’s life can have–impact which is unseen at the moment that suicide is contemplated. This is a virtual It’s a Wonderful Life story in the real world. Thank you. 

  • OEFVet

    Mr. and Mrs. Arrendondo we thank you and your family for your son’s sacrifice and I’m sorry their live were cut short.  As a military parent I realize the sacrifice that the younger siblings, spouses and parents make when the military loved one is gone to war.  Alex was brave and honorable, you must be very proud of him.  Brian’s heart and grief must have been unbearable but I pray he is resting in peace with his brother.  Both Alex and Brian are casualties of war and should be honored as such.   

    • Gba8861

      To notbuyingit.

      True there are hero’s around us every day like the Doctors and Nurses at the area hospitals that day. Anybody including Mr Arrendondo who chose to act and not just watch is a hero in my world.. Im a firefighter and that is our duty to act, and i can think of a couple 0f incidents that were so horrific that I was frozen for a moment and said this is my duty to act. Im sure that many peaple there are reflecting and saying why didn’t I help.. I totally understand it’s a natural response… To notbuyingit I do understand what your saying but if Jeff Bauman was my son, brother or father Mr. Arrendondo is my hero. 
      God Bless to all

  • Notbuyingit

    I read this man’s story and it is very sad that he lost his two sons but I do not understand for the life of me why he is being touted all over the internet as a HERO when there were 100′s of people just like him helping the victims. I have seen two other photos of this same “hero” standing over the victims just watching. The day of or the day after there were two facebook pages set up requesting people sign a petition to President Obama to give this man a medal! Seriously???? The day after the bombing people are concerned about this guy getting an award when a child and two young women have died and 100′s of others fighting for their lives.

    He claims to have picked up Jeff Bauman and put him in the wheelchair yet he has hardly any blood on him. He claims he used his clothes and a towel to stop the bleeding of people…so what did he bring a change of clothes and a towel with him to the Marathon. I know I usually don’t take a towel out with me unless I’m going to the beach.  He’s shaking uncontrollably while being interviewed. I saw many people interviewed that day….nobody else was shaking. HERO??? I’m not buying it!


    • Angr

      You’re an idiot

  • Graham Garrity

    There have been numerous acts of heroism over the years by my many different people. Every time I hear of such an act I feel humbled  by the knowledge that people such as Carlos and those other heros step up to the plate no matter what the situation.

  • Bonnie S.

    Thank you for helping to save lives that day, Carlos.  Your life story is amazing and makes me sad and happy at the same time.  I know God had you there for a reason.  You should write a book about your life and this event.  You are an inspiration and cause for hope in this dark world.  God bless you always!

  • This man is a fraud

    I RECOGNIZE THIS MAN… CARLOS ARREDONDO IS A FRAUD! He has a long police record for selling drugs, multiple arrests for possession of narcotics, and a long history of assault and battery/domestic violence. This man is not a hero, he is an attention hog. I am sorry, but he is not a hero, he is a fraud.

    • Dude

      You are a fraud. I recognize you.

  • Jamie

    He is a true hero. He makes me proud to be an American. Thank God for him and others like him!

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Paul/100002922859117 Robert Paul

      Carlos is from Costa Rica.  He is a hero, but it shouldnt make you proud to be an american

  • guest

    It is worth noting that the young man that Carlos likely saved by slowing his bleeding… provided the description of the bombing suspect, from his hospital bed…

  • Va310

    You counldnt have said any better Michelle! Carlos Arrendondo is a HERO.. 

  • eraserhead12

    You know what happened when this man–who lost both his sons–became a pacifist? Rednecks brutally beat him bloody (http://warisacrime.org/carlos)

    I hate reading the comments sections of news articles, because regardless of content they are full of thick-skulled rednecks making uneducated claims, twisting God’s word to justify their misogynistic/racist/hate-filled spews (soo many bible quotes!). The worst part is knowing hundreds of thousands of people share those opinions.

    I’ve read soo many comments about how all Muslims/people of color/foreign nationals should be ethnically cleansed from society, thanks to the Boston Massacre. God knows how many people secretly want this hero deported.

  • http://twitter.com/cmorabito Christine Morabito

    Good to know we still have heros. Thank you and God Bless you Carlos!

  • http://www.facebook.com/bob.lavigne3 Bob Lavigne

    Thank You Carlos, you made you son very proud of you today. Semper Fi.

  • Diane

    Kudos Carlos..you were the angel God sent to help an injured brother. I am so proud of you. God bless you many times over.

  • Theshantiscene

    Wow. OMG. This is a true american hero. This magic cowboy hat man jumped the fence and put out the flames of this victim who was on fire and had his legs blown off… manifested a wheelchair out of thin air, picked him up and put him in the wheel-chair and wheeled him to an ambulance without even getting any blood on his sleeves, pinching his femoral artery the whole time to keep him from bleeding to death! Praise the Lord and God bless America!

  • Jennycintron

    Thank you!!! God bles..

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