Saturday, November 03, 2007


Good day and bad. By now you may have heard that Ryan Shay died while competing in the Men's Olympic Marathon Trials held in Central Park. Its sad for more than one reason. First, that such a young talent was taken away at such an early age. And next, I worry again that people will be condemning runners, when the truth is that it is such a small percentage who have problems, it should not be an issue. Sadly, it is.

Ryan is originally a Michigan native, and was winner of the 25k National Championships held in GR every year at the Fifth Third River Bank Run. Such a freak thing!

On the upside, 2nd place finisher, Dathan Ritzenhein, is also a Michigan native, and I have to claim my 15 min. of fame here.

When Dathan was 13, a group of us were doing indoor triathlons every year, and his dad was a part of the group. He and the son of another guy from our group needed a swimmer for their relay. I offered, since I was also doing the tri individually. I didn't know until that day what a phenomenon he was. I can't remember the outcome of the race, because obviously we didn't place, but from there on out I have followed his career through the years.

What impressed me most, though, was his first 5k race the following spring, when he was 14, and his time then was 16 something! It was incredible. From there, it has all been history, with all his successes.

I hope the best for him in his upcoming training, and am sincerely sorry about Ryan Shay. A huge loss to the running community.


Lisa - Slow & Steady said...

Yes, that is a sad situation.

Sunshine said...

Appreciated the personal side of the story from you. I was impressed with the GR running community when we were there. Fun for you to be a part of it.