Boston Marathon retires bib No. 261 for Kathrine Switzer

Switzer went on to found 261 Fearless, a foundation established to support women as they "take on their personal challenges through running or walking".

The Boston Athletic Association reported that 30,074 runners entered the race this year from 57 USA states and territories, and 99 countries of citizenship.

Switzer was given a number for the men's-only race in 1967 only because she used her initials - "K.V." - when she filled out her entry forms.

The feat was even made more historic when an official tried to physically remove her from the race after a few miles.

And on Monday, the now 70-year-old ran the marathon again, wearing the same bib number, but under very different circumstances. The Boston Marathon has retired only one other number in its history: 61, in recognition of the 61 races started by athlete Johnny Kelly.

Switzer's boyfriend shouldered him out of the way, and Switzer ran on.

Army Staff Sergeant Earl Granville is receiving a ton of attention, and rightfully so, for what he did during the Boston Marathon on Monday.

Switzer began organizing women's road races that helped persuade the Olympics to add a women's marathon in 1984. "That event changed my life and, as a outcome, the lives of millions of women around the world.", she writes in an essay in The New York Times.

Meanwhile, Kathrine went on to complete 39 marathons, and win the New York City marathon in 1974, before creating a series of women-only races (the Avon International Running Circuit) across the world.

In the clip, Granville - of Carbondale, Pennsylvania - is seen hoisting his race partner on his back and carrying her to the end of the race. You know, we laugh about it now because it's so amusing when a girl is saved by her burly boyfriend. But. "I was not only pushed by that tailwind, but also buoyed by the crowd".

Geoffrey Kirui won the 121st edition of the men's race on Monday, and Edna Kiplagat won the women's division to complete the first Kenyan sweep in five years. And on race day, she fired the start gun for the women's elite field.

Jimmy Golen has covered the Boston Marathon for The Associated Press since 1995.

  • Joanne Flowers