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Boston Marathon Blast Witness Sees Need for Gun Control

FILE- Runners continue to run towards the finish line of the Boston Marathon as an explosion erupts in this photo exclusively licensed to Reuters by photographer Dan Lampariello, in Boston, Massachusetts, April 15, 2013.

An Ecuadorian athlete knows firsthand the terror experienced by the Orlando shooting victims.

Marian Coro was a runner in the Boston Marathon when terrorists attacked in 2013. Still haunted by her experience, she is calling for changes to U.S. gun laws.

Coro had just finished the race when she heard the explosion. Like many others, she ran for her life during the ensuing panic.

In her confusion, Coro thought the explosion might have come from the train carrying her family. Frightened, she attempted to contact her loved ones.

"You begin to despair, because you don't know where your family is. You don't know what happened. And there are feelings that you can't explain, because you panic," Coro said.

Life-changing event

The attack changed her life and her attitude about facing possible dangers.

"I learned to recognize the danger when you're somewhere. You look at something that's happening, you just react," she said, adding that she no longer has the confidence that "everything will be OK."

She said the experience has changed her. "I've learned to appreciate my parents, my family, my brothers," because she thought she might lose everything.

The professional athlete and her family were lucky and escaped unharmed. However, she said these events must lead to getting guns off the street.

"Unfortunately, it’s easy to get them, isn't it? Anyone can have them, but I think that they should pass a law banning them," Coro said.