Good News From Boston: 44th Straight Marathon for Ben Beach

I ran the 1969 and 1970 Boston Marathons, plus several other races, with Bennett Beach, my friend on the college paper. But he had started a year before that, and he has finished every single Boston Marathon since then.

Today was #44, and once again he finished -- more of an accomplishment in recent years because he has developed a strange leg disorder. From the online results just now:


Thumbnail image for BenBeach.jpgThe Washington Post has a great story about Ben this morning, talking about his "other" life as a writer, lawyer, environmentalist, and political staffer, and his long determination to be at the Hopkinton start line every Patriots' Day. It also describes the longevity hunt: Johnny Kelley has the record of running 61 Boston Marathons and finishing 58. So Ben -- and a rival who started one year earlier and like him is still going -- work against time and injury toward that goal. Picture of Ben from the Post story.

In other news, Geoffrey Mutai won today's race with the fastest marathon time ever. Congrats! But I was mainly looking to see how Ben Beach had done.

James Fallows is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Carter's chief speechwriter. His latest book is China Airborne. More

James Fallows is based in Washington as a national correspondent for The Atlantic. He has worked for the magazine for nearly 30 years and in that time has also lived in Seattle, Berkeley, Austin, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, and Beijing. He was raised in Redlands, California, received his undergraduate degree in American history and literature from Harvard, and received a graduate degree in economics from Oxford as a Rhodes scholar. In addition to working for The Atlantic, he has spent two years as chief White House speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, two years as the editor of US News & World Report, and six months as a program designer at Microsoft. He is an instrument-rated private pilot. He is also now the chair in U.S. media at the U.S. Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, in Australia.

Fallows has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award five times and has won once; he has also won the American Book Award for nonfiction and a N.Y. Emmy award for the documentary series Doing Business in China. He was the founding chairman of the New America Foundation. His recent books Blind Into Baghdad (2006) and Postcards From Tomorrow Square (2009) are based on his writings for The Atlantic. His latest book is China Airborne. He is married to Deborah Fallows, author of the recent book Dreaming in Chinese. They have two married sons.

Fallows welcomes and frequently quotes from reader mail sent via the "Email" button below. Unless you specify otherwise, we consider any incoming mail available for possible quotation -- but not with the sender's real name unless you explicitly state that it may be used. If you are wondering why Fallows does not use a "Comments" field below his posts, please see previous explanations here and here.


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