Alfred Scaletta of the Chicago-area community of Hawthorne Woods told WBBM-TV, Chicago, Monday he and his wife had just landed at the Los Angeles airport Friday morning on a trip to visit their daughter when the shooting occurred.
"All of a sudden, we're looking at the airport terminal, and people are just running out of the airport. They're just sprinting, and we're like, 'what's going on here?'" he said.
He said he and his wife hid behind a concrete barrier outside the airport. One security officer was killed in the incident.
"One of the police officers came over with a large gun, and basically escorted about 100 of us back in to the international terminal, which was next to Terminal 3," Scaletta said.
They had to wait 7 hours before being allowed to leave the area.
Scaletta said he ran in the Boston Marathon last April, finishing about a half hour before two bombs detonated killing three people and wounding more than 250 others.
"That's pretty scary to think about it," he said. "I'm very thankful, very lucky, and very appreciative of what happened; and also feel really good about the law enforcement, the people that are protecting us."