Felicitas Perez was welcomed to the finish line of the New York City Marathon on Sunday by hundreds of onlookers cheering her on and singing to Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York.” While the energy was high, the sky was dark, as it was 9:55 p.m. The 26.2 miles had taken her 10 hours and 21 minutes to complete. It’s the slowest marathon the 60-year-old has ever run and the “grand finale” she’d only dreamed of.
Perez, from San Antonio, Texas, isn’t a stranger to strenuous long-distance courses. In fact, she’s run numerous 5Ks, marathons and even a 50K race (which is just over 31 miles), she tells Yahoo Life. Her personal record for completing the 26.2 marathon distance is six and a half hours. But after suffering multiple brain aneurysms and a burst appendix over the last five years, being among the last to finish the 2023 NYC Marathon remains a great accomplishment.