April 25, 2013 at 11:54 AM ET
A critically wounded Sydney Corcoran feared the Boston Marathon explosions had left her an orphan. The bombings had separated her from her parents, who were part of a group cheering on her aunt.
“From the moment I got in the ambulance, I wanted to know where they were. I thought I was going to wake up and have no one left,” she told TODAY’s Natalie Morales in an exclusive interview set to air Friday.
Her father was very much alive, but attending to his wife and Sydney's mother, who lay on the sidewalk with two severely injured legs that eventually would be amputated.
“I just wanted to die,” Celeste Corcoran told Morales. “The thought was there 'cause I was in so much pain. And then I just remember thinking, like, ‘I can't. I can't. I don't want to leave my family,' you know. 'There's still too much to do.'”
The two women are now recovering in the same Boston hospital room. Doctors have said Sydney would have bled to death if it hadn’t been for the quick action of strangers who came to her rescue. A photograph of the two men applying a makeshift tourniquet to Sydney’s leg appeared the next day on the cover of the Boston Globe and The New York Times.
In their interview with Morales, both women describe the ups and downs of their recovery. Celeste Corcoran said she’s been overwhelmed at times.
“I know in my heart that I'm going to be OK. And your life changes all the time. And it takes different twists and turns and stuff. It’s never all good stuff,” she said. “I really believe that if you just kind of persevere and believe in yourself, you really have to dig down deep inside and just be like, 'I can do this. It's going to be hard, but I can do this.'"
See the full story on Friday, April 26th on TODAY and later on “Rock Center with Brian Williams” at 10 p.m./9 Central.