On Sunday morning at 7:30, Dr. Stuart Weiss, the medical director of the New York City Marathon, was holding a coffee with one hand, gesturing with the other, and moving at the stereotypically brisk pace of an emergency room doctor. Walking in and out of the white medical command tent in Central Park, he was focused, he said, on “What’s missing? What’s missing? What’s missing?”
It was an hour before the first wave of runners set off from Staten Island. Two dozen volunteers had arrived — phones were ringing, radios crackling — and a young woman jogged between tables set up for city agencies, New York Road Runners command staff and ham radio operators. “We’re the only ones around when the cellphones go down,” Steve Mendelsohn, the chief operator, said.