Woman Wins Dallas Marathon With the Help of a Stranger After Falling Near Finish Line
Chandler Self was helped to her feet by a kind teen each of the four times she fell.
A marathoner who collapsed with just several steps left before finishing Sunday’s Dallas Marathon had assistance from a kindhearted fellow runner to finish the race.
Chandler Self, a 32-year-old psychiatrist from New York City, was leading the BMW Dallas Marathon but was running on empty.
Footage from the event shows Self collapsing on the final stretch of the race.
"When I watch that video, I think I cringe like everyone else," Self told Inside Edition Monday.
Self could see the finish line when she collapsed for the first time. That's when Texas native Ariana Luterman, a 17-year-old high school senior, repeatedly helped the fallen runner to her feet.
Luterman was competing in the high school relay with the elite runners Sunday morning.
"Ariana, the 17-year-old high school student, was really trying to help me out," Self recalled. "I even tried to push her away but her heart was overcome with kindness and compassion for me that I think she was like, ‘I gotta help her.’"
Self, who grew up in Dallas, was not disqualified and came in first, finishing at 2 hours, 53 minutes, 57 seconds.
According to Dallas News’ Sportsday, BMW Dallas Marathon executive director Marcus Grunewald said runners cannot receive any third-party assistance from a spectator, a race official or medical staff or anyone outside the race, but "another participant is a gray zone."
Self was adamant that she could have finished the race without Luterman's help.
"When you can’t run, you walk. When you can’t walk, you crawl, and no matter how many times you fall down, that just means that is how many times you get back up again," she said. "I know I would have made it across that finish line no matter what."
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