Contact Us

Tragedy Over Triumph

Getty Images

Yesterday’s Philadelphia Marathon is/was an incredible athletic, physical, and mental achievement to complete. Unfortunately, the celebration for participating or enjoying the event took a devastating turn yesterday morning.

As a first time participant — I ran the Half Marathon for Best Buddies charity — the emotions when crossing the finish line are hard to describe. The obvious — soreness, exhaustion, elation, pride, hunger, amazement — are easy to understand. I image those are enhanced by the amazing athletes who were able and willing to run the full 26.2 miles.

What I didn’t know at the time I crossed the finish line yesterday morning around 9:35 a.m. was that a competitor who crossed just minutes before me — I finished at 2:07:20, he at 1:58:06 — collapsed and later died at Hahnemann University Hospital. Jefferey Lee was his name. He was just 21 years old — four years younger than me and undoubtedly in better running shape — and a University of Penn student from California.

In an almost unreal twist of cruelty, another competitor — his identity unknown as of last night — a 40-year old full marathon runner, also collapsed and died. According to police, he crumpled and died a quarter-mile from the finish line.

While this is extremely rare — fewer than 1 percent of every 100,000 marathoners die from sudden cardiac arrest during training or racing — it’s also extremely scary and hard to believe.

Did I interact with either of these people? Did I share a look, a water break, and nod with the half-marathoner who was only about a 40 second pace ahead of me over the course of 13.1 miles?

I thought about many risks yesterday morning when I awoke in Philaelphia at 5 a.m. Torn ACL’s, hamstring strains, and re-breaking a creaky ankle. I wondered if I could actually pull off running for that long. But I never, ever thought about my life being in jeopardy.

On behalf of the 105.7  The Hawk family, and for every one who competed out there yesterday, my condolences go out to the victims and their families.

Best of 105.7 The Hawk

Recommended For You

Around the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to http://1057thehawk.com using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Register on 105.7 The Hawk quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!

Not a member? Sign up here

Register on 105.7 The Hawk quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive Mile High Club contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.