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Chicago Marathon: One runner dies, another gives birth [Updated]

October 10, 2011 | 11:58 am

Runners compete in the Chicago Marathon

A Greensboro, N.C., firefighter collapsed about 500 yards from the finish line of the Chicago Marathon on Sunday and was pronounced dead at a hospital soon after.

Capt. William Caviness was running to raise money for a charity that helps burn victims. According to the Chicago Tribune, Caviness, 35 and the father of two children, was a veteran marathon runner and lifelong athlete.

"Will was a great man, father, husband, son, brother, uncle, cousin," his father, Lee, said in an email. "He was a real HERO doing something to help others until the very end. ... I am just heartbroken. Devastated, and it feels so unreal."

The cause of death has not been determined. An autopsy was scheduled for Monday.

[Updated at 12:52 p.m.: The Cook County medical examiner's office reported Monday that further tests are needed to help determine why Caviness died.]

It was the first death at the marathon since 2007 but the sixth since 1998.

In much happier news, another marathon participant -- Chicago's Amber Miller -- gave birth hours after crossing the finish line. She was 39 weeks pregnant but was given a doctor's approval to run half the race and walk the other half.

"Everybody just kind of stared as I'm running by," said Miller, who was accompanied by her husband during the race. 

Although contractions started toward the end of the race, Miller had time to grab a bite to eat before baby girl June was born at 10:29 p.m., weighing 7 pounds, 13 ounces.

Moses Mosop of Kenya set a course record (2:05:37), and Russia's Liliya Shobukhova claimed the women's title (2:18:20), becoming the first person to win the race three straight times.

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-- Chuck Schilken

Photo: Runners compete in the Chicago Marathon on Sunday. Credit: Jose M. Osorio / Chicago Tribune / MCT

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