BOSTON (CBS) – Several American service members finished the 116th Boston Marathon in full uniform on Monday.

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“It’s really hot. Difficult. My feet are hurting. We pushed through though,” said John Staruk of Holden, Mass.

The service members, who were wearing boots and carrying backpacks, said it was tough keeping cool as temperatures soared into the 80’s.

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“The weather today was really hot, so we needed to drink lots of water the whole time, so that’s probably the most difficult part,” said David Schirmer.

The hot temps forced hundreds of runners, including last year’s men’s and women’s champions, to drop out.

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“It was pretty hard. It wasn’t as bad as last year though. I think we were a little more prepared this year,” said Matt Joyner of Lee, Mass.

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The soldiers did say that the crowds, who turned out in droves despite the heat, helped them get through the marathon.

“Just to be able to have everyone cheering, just the roar of the crowd pushing you through,” said Staruk.

“You kind of forget where you are when the crowd’s cheering, so it’s just, they keep you going,” said Schirmer.

“The crowd really pushes you through. It’d be a lot harder without the crowd here,” added Joyner.

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Staruk, Schirmer and Joyner are students at Western New England University.