Doroteo Flores, 89, Winner of 1952 Boston Marathon

Today Is: November 26th 2015
12 AUG 2011
Indigenous Guatemalan became first Boston Marathon champion from Latin America

Doroteo Flores, the first Central American winner of the Boston Marathon, has died at the age of 89.

On a scorching 88-degree day, Doroteo Flores of Guatemala survived the wretched conditions to win by almost five minutes in 2:31:53. Flores, a laborer in a Guatemala mill, took the lead from countryman Luis Velasquez near the 10-mile mark in Natick. Appearing undaunted by the oppressive heat and humidity, Flores breezed through the remainder of the route to finish ahead of American Victor Dyrgall.

“We regret the news we recently received on the passing of Mr. Doroteo Flores, of Guatemala, the Boston Marathon’s first Latin American champion in 1952,” said Tom Grilk, B.A.A. Executive Director.  “Mr. Flores won that year’s race in 2:31:53 by nearly five minutes, which was an impressive victory on an unseasonably warm day.  Mr. Flores returned to Boston on the occasion of the Boston Marathon several times after his victory and most recently in 2005 when the Boston Athletic Association celebrated his victory and he met  fellow Boston Marathon champions. The victory by Mr. Flores at the Boston Marathon elevated his status in his home country, and he became an inspiration to generations of runners in Guatemala.  We experience a sense of deep loss whenever a Boston Marathon champion passes because a victory at Boston immediately brings an individual into our family of champions, all of whom share the distinction and who become ambassadors for our event wherever their careers and personal lives take them.”



B.A.A. Moment 2

1935 John A. Kelley

Born in West Medford, Massachusetts as one of ten children, Kelley ran track and cross-country at Arlington High School in Massachusetts. He did not finish his first Boston Marathon in 1928, but eventually competed in a record 61 Boston Marathons. A legend of the marathon, Kelley won the 1935 and 1945 runnings of the Boston Marathon. He finished in second place at Boston a record seven times. Between 1934 to 1950, he finished in the top five 15 times at Boston, consistently running in the 2:30s. He ran his last full marathon at Boston in 1992 at the age of 84, his 61st start and 58th finish there.