The Origins of the New York Marathon By Dominique M Carson
Fred Lebow was a runner and founder of the New York City Marathon. Lebow launched the biggest race in the world, which became a citywide celebration. The race director ran the inaugural marathon in 1970, finishing 45th out of 55 runners in four hours, twelve minutes, and nine seconds. Lebow ran 69 marathons in 30 countries, launched three marathons, Empire State Building Run Up, the Fifth Avenue Mile, and the Crazy Legs Mini Marathon, and was president of the New York Road Runners Club for 20 years. He passed away on October 9, 1994 at the age of 62 after being diagnosed with brain cancer. To celebrate Lebow’s legacy, artist. Jesus Ygnacio Dominguez created a sculpture after him on November 4, 1994 that depicts Lebow’s timing runners with his watch.
The Road Runners Club housed in a townhouse on East 89th Street features a striking wall inscribed with runners’ personal reasons for running. They vary from a dedication to a deceased parent to a desire to be healthy for oneself.#