Grete Waitz has died at the age of 57, far too young. Her importance for women's long-distance running would be hard to exaggerate:
As Amby Burfoot of Runner's World wrote in 2004:You can learn more about women and the marathon and watch Waitz run here.
"The women's running revolution, the biggest sea change in our sport in 30 years, began in Norway, where a young track star, Grete Waitz, broke boundaries as well as records. In 1972, at the Munich Olympics, she ran the 1500 meters, the first time women were allowed to participate in the event. She went on to win the New York City Marathon an almost-inconceivable nine times, a feat achieved by no other runner (male or female), and set three world records."