Runner Collapses And Dies During Marathon

Sunday, November 16th 2008, 4:25 pm
By: News On 6

TULSA, OK -- A 21-year old Claremore man has died after collapsing during the Route 66 Marathon in Tulsa on Sunday.

The race director says it happened just feet from a medical tent.  Chris Lieberman says the victim received immediate help, but he didn't survive. 

The victim has been identified as Kjell Tovander who recently attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

Learn more about Kjell Tovander

News of Tovander's death sent shockwaves throughout the running community. 

"It's sinking in, a young man like that. I'm sure he trained hard. It's hard work to train for a half-marathon. I'm sure he was very proud and to have that happen is just tragic for everybody," said Chris Lieberman. 

Dr. Lamont Cavanagh, the medical director of the marathon, says it is unclear what may have caused the Tovanders' death.  Tovander's death is the first in the 3-year history of the Route 66 Marathon.

The man was running in the 13.1 mile half marathon. 

More than 5,000 entrants were taking part in the marathon.

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11/17/2008  Runner's Mother Stunned By Loss