Jeff Bauman was frantically trying to reach his son, also named Jeff Bauman, who was at the Boston Marathon to cheer on his girlfriend, when his stepdaughter called and told him about a photo he needed to look at. The elder Bauman immediately recognized his son in the graphic picture, being wheeled away by an emergency responder and Carlos Arredondo. He and his wife began calling hospitals to track him down, then made the drive from New Hampshire. When the younger Jeff, 27, awoke from his surgeries yesterday, both of his legs were amputated at the knee. He couldn't talk, but he mouthed the words, "Boom! Boom!" to his father, the New York Times reports.
Arredondo immediately ran toward victims after the blast and found Bauman with his shirt aflame. He beat out the fire, tied his shirt around the stump of one of Bauman's legs, and then helped emergency workers get him to an ambulance. Of Arredondo, Bauman's mom says, "The man in the cowboy hat—he saved Jeff’s life." The Baumans want to talk to Arredondo to let him know their son is alive. But the Times then asks what they'll say to their son when he fully comes to. The response stings: "I just don't know," says his dad, crying. (Arredondo has his own incredible story; click to read it.)