SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - On Wednesday, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev spoke for the first time in court just before a judge formally sentence him to death for the 2013 attack that killed three people and wounded more than 260.

He publicly apologized to the victims and loved ones for the first time. "I pray for your relief, for your healing," said the Boston Marathon bomber.

Randy Rechs, a local runner left Boston on the morning of the marathon, but his friends were in the stands near the finish line when the bombs went off.

The day the bombs went off, Randy Rechs was supposed to be at the finish line, but an injury had him heading back to San Diego that morning.

"I was on the plane and the passenger next to me tapped me and said you need to look at the TV screen," he said.

He wasn't there when the bombs went off, but his friends were in the bleachers opposite to one of the blasts.

"All they showed on CNN was the bleachers with no one in them. That's where all my friends were. I thought for sure I lost a lot of loved ones that day," he said.

His friends were safe, and since that day he has followed the trial of Tsarnaev, and he said, today's apology does not cut it.

"This was premeditated, it was calculated. They plotted it out to kill a bunch of people for no reason. These guys were old enough to know better," he said.

The judge sentenced Tsarnaev to death, a sentenced that did not surprise Randy.

"If you know the people of Boston, they're not going to let anyone get away with something like that," said Rechs.

Knowing the people of Boston, Randy said it's no surprise how they've come together.

"It was amazing, I've never experienced anything like it. I go back every year and it's an unbelievable place, unbelievable race, and I'm glad everything's back in order after that terrible tragedy," said Rechs.

Tsarnaev's death sentence is subject to an automatic appeal, but it could take years to work its way through the courts.