Marathon Runner Dies Of Heart Attack After Race In Barcelona

Nathan Francis

A marathon runner died as he competed in a race in Barcelona on Sunday, the second incident this month of a runner perishing during competition.

The city's Clinic Hospital said the 47-year-old man suffered a heart attack while running in the Barcelona marathon. He died shortly after arriving at the clinic, hospital officials said.

The marathon runner's death came just days after another runner perished during a long distance race. On Friday, an Israeli soldier died of heat stroke after competing in a half-marathon in Tel Aviv during a heat wave in the nation.

The soldier collapsed during the race and was rushed to the hospital, but doctors could not resuscitate him. Israel's minister of public security would go on to criticize the marathon's organizers for allowing it to be run in hot and dangerous conditions.

The temperate during the race reached 90 degrees Fahrenheit, causing four other runners to collapse from heat stroke. All of them were put in medically induced comas and put on respirators at Tel Aviv hospital.

More than 50 runners were treated in total during the race.

The Tel Aviv marathon's organizers said they regretted the runner's death but said the followed they instructions of health officials. The full marathon scheduled that day was suspended, and the half-marathon started earlier in the day to avoid the hottest temperatures.

Barcelona marathon officials released a statement about the runner's death, identifying the man as X.J., a 45-year-old resident of Hospitalet de Llobregat in Barcelona.

"The Catalan athlete who had completed the test in a time of 4:05:10 and participated through the AESE Running Club, was an expert popular runner," officials noted on a translated version of the marathon's website. "X.J. fainted after crossing the finish line of the Zurich Marató de Barcelona, being treated immediately by the unit of the Barcelona Red Cross. He was later transferred to the Hospital Clínic of Barcelona, where he died later."

After the marathon runner died in the race, Barcelona City Council activated a counseling services to help family members in need.