Dick Hoyt passed away at the age of 80. He and his son Rick ran the marathon 32 times together and participated in more than 1,000 races during his lifetime.
Sad news from the United States has informed that one of the most recognized runners of the legendary Boston Marathon, Dick Hoyt, died at the age of 80 due to heart failure in his sleep, according to his son Rick. Together they became a symbol of hard work and perseverance, completing 32 marathons and more than 1,000 races together.
Dick Hoyt and his son Rick became Boston Marathon legends after participating in the race for the first time in the 80s. On that occasion time, Dick pushed his son in a customized racing wheelchair, making history upon completing the 26.2 miles.
“We are tremendously saddened to learn of the passing of Boston Marathon icon Dick Hoyt. Dick personified what it means to be a Boston Marathoner, finishing 32 races with his son Rick. We are keeping his many family and friends in our prayers,” tweeted the Boston Athletic Association on Wednesday, March 17.
“He was not only a fan-favorite who inspired thousands, but also a loyal friend and father who took pride in spending quality time with his son Rick while running from Hopkinton to Boston,” the association added in a statement.
His son Rick, now 59, is a quadriplegic and was born with cerebral palsy. However, that never deterred Dick and his late wife, and they proved it throughout history, using their legendary wheelchair and bettering themselves every day.
Originally from Holland, Massachusetts, and known as Team Hoyt, the duo began making history in 1977, when Rick told his father that he wanted to participate in a 5-mile charity run for a paralyzed lacrosse player. They participated, coming in second-to-last. “Dad, when I’m running, I feel like I’m not disabled,” Rick told him at the time.
Dick never left his son’s side, and in 2014, they participated in their last marathon. It was going to be in 2013, but the terrorist attack changed their plans. Thus, this is how they participated in the marathon 32 times, running more than 1,000 races throughout their lives, including 257 triathlons, in addition to cycling across the country for 45 days, as detailed on their website.