Rick Hoyt, a Boston Marathon icon who competed in his wheelchair with his father, passes away

BOSTON — Rick Hoyt, a Boston Marathon icon who competed in his wheelchair with his father for decades, died Monday at the age of 61 after suffering complications with his health.

“It is with profound sadness that the Hoyt Family announced the passing of our beloved brother and uncle, Rick Hoyt,” The Hoyt Foundation said in a statement. “Rick passed away due to complications with his respiratory system.”

Rick, along with his father Dick, took part in countless road races and triathlons over the years. The pair most notably completed 32 Boston Marathons together as Dick pushed his son along the 26.2-mile route from Hopkinton to Boston.

Team Hoyt, made up of the father-son duo, took part in their first Boston Marathon in 1980, quickly becoming fan favorites for their inspirational determination and spirit. The pair’s last race came in 2014.

In a statement, the Boston Athletic Association said, Rick Hoyt will always be remembered as a Boston Marathon icon and for personifying the ‘Yes You Can’ mentality that defined Team Hoyt. We are fortunate to have been able to call Rick a friend, mentor, pioneer, and Boston Marathon finisher. His legacy will live on through the Rick & Dick Hoyt Award, which is presented each April around the Boston Marathon to someone who exhibits the spirit of Team Hoyt through advocacy and inclusion.”

Rick, who retired from racing in 2021, was also a pioneer in education. His mother, Judy Hoyt, changed the laws allowing her son to be educated alongside his non-disabled peers.

“His family is heartbroken and requests time to grieve and will share details as they become available,” The Hoyt Foundation added.

The Foundation noted that a decision on whether to delay Saturday’s Dick Hoyt Memorial “Yes You Can” Road Race will be made at a later time.

Dick passed away in March 2021 at the age of 80.

Longtime Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara ran the 127th Boston Marathon on behalf of the Hoyt Foundation in April.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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