Pregnant Former Olympian Meskerem Legesse Dies, Her Baby Saved

Meskerem Legesse ran in the 1,500-meter competition at the Athens Olympics in 2004. (WFSB-TV)

Associated Press

By Dave Collins

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A former Olympic and professional runner from Ethiopia who was due to give birth in three weeks collapsed at a restaurant and died, but doctors saved her baby, her friends said Wednesday.

Meskerem Legesse, 26, who lived in Westport, was with her 2-year-old son when she collapsed at a Chinese restaurant in Hamden on Monday, said her friend Fatima Sene. She was transported to a hospital, where she died and the baby was saved, Sene said.

The cause of death was unclear. Sene said Legesse had suffered heart problems in the past.

“It is very sad. She was a very good person,” Sene said. “She would do anything for anybody. And she loved that little boy she left behind.”

Legesse ran in the 1,500-meter competition at the Athens Olympics in 2004. She finished 12th in a first-round heat with a time of 4:18:03 and didn’t advance to the medal race. She moved on to a professional running career in the U.S., competing in events including the Boston Indoor Games, Fifth Avenue Mile in Manhattan and the Millrose Games in New York. She apparently hadn’t raced within the past few years.

Legesse’s children are now with their father, and arrangements are being made to take Legesse’s body to Ethiopia, Sene said. Legesse was planning to get married to the children’s father, she said.

Read more at Yahoo News.

Related:
Family to Repatriate Body of Athlete Meskerem Legesse to Ethiopia (TADIAS)

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1 Response to “Pregnant Former Olympian Meskerem Legesse Dies, Her Baby Saved”


  1. 1 Family to Repatriate Body of Athlete Meskerem Legesse to Ethiopia at Tadias Magazine Pingback on Jul 19th, 2013 at 3:41 pm
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