Man Dies in Sun-Scorched Marathon

Record heat, safety concerns end Chicago race after 3½ hours
By Zach Samalin,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 7, 2007 11:26 PM CDT
A fire truck sprays water on marathon participants during the 2007 LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon on Sunday, Oct. 7, 2007, in Chicago. Organizers shut down the course and diverted runners back to the finish...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – A 35-year-old man competing in the Chicago Marathon collapsed on the course and died yesterday, an apparent victim of record temperatures that topped out around 88 degrees. Officials called off the race at 11:30 a.m., with thousands still running and some complaining about a lack of water available along the way, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Ambulances took 312 people suffering from heat-related condition to local hospitals; only 4,000 runners of 24,000-plus who finished completed the full distance before the race was cut off and the others were told to walk the rest of the way. One runner  in the original field of nearly 36,000 was already walking when word of the cancellation came down. "It's a blessing, man," he said.