TORONTO, June 04, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — To mark Tom Longboat Day, Historica Canada has released a new Heritage Minute that tells the story of the Onondaga distance runner from Six Nations of the Grand River in Ontario.
Born in 1886, Longboat was sent to the Mohawk Institute Residential School in Brantford. He escaped and returned home where he attracted attention for his long-distance running. He won his first race, the five-mile Victoria Day race in Caledonia in 1906 —and his winning streak continued with the 1906 Around the Bay Road Race in Hamilton; the 1906, 1907, and 1908 Ward Marathons in Toronto; the 1907 Boston Marathon; and the 1909 World Professional Marathon Championship in New York. He was one of the most celebrated and renowned athletes in North America when he enlisted in 1916 and served as a Dispatch Carrier in the First World War, seeing active duty at both Vimy Ridge and Passchendaele.
In 1919, upon returning to Canada after the war, Longboat settled in Toronto for nearly 20 years before retiring in Ohsweken, Six Nations Grand River where he passed away in 1949. He was inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 1955 and Canada’s Olympic Hall of Fame in 1960.
“Tom Longboat was a world champion runner, a pioneer in training methods, a war hero, and an inspiration for his resilience against…
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