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Running Giant Joe Kleinerman Passes Away |
Running USA Wire
Nov 13, 2003
NEW YORK - Joe Kleinerman, a runner, track coach, a founder of New York Road Runners and New York City Marathon and beloved figure to many in the local and national running community died on Tuesday. He was 91.
A memorial service was to be held in Manhattan on Friday.
Kleinerman was among the founders of the organization in 1958 and in 1970 he was there to help Fred Lebow stage the first New York City Marathon, run entirely in Central Park. He went on to assist Lebow in turning the race into today's world-famous five-borough spectacular.
Kleinerman was also a strong proponent of women's long distance running and in 1967, he joined Vince Chiapetta and Nina Kuscsik, in leading a national movement to allow women to run races longer than a mile.
In recognition of his long devoted service to the running community and to the organization, the lobby of the New York Road Runners building in Manhattan was dedicated in his name in a ceremony this summer attended by many of his long time associates.
Joe Kleinerman was born Jan. 12, 1912 in Spring Valley, N.Y. and grew up in New York City. At 13, he began to run after his older brother Mike took him to the Millrose Games. In 1941 and 1942 he finished 10th in the Boston Marathon. The Millrose Athletic Association named him an assistant coach in 1941 and head coach in 1967.
One of his lasting legacies to the sport he loved is the Joe Kleinerman Scholarship Fund created by New York Road Runners this year. The college scholarship will be awarded to a New York City Public School boy and girl track athlete beginning next spring.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Joe Kleinerman Scholarship Fund, C/O New York Road Runners, 9 East 89th Street, New York, NY 10128.