Ethiopian native takes top spot at Marine Corps Marathon, Army captain is first female finisher

Girma Bedada, 33, a member of the national Ethiopian running team, holds his trophy high Sunday after winning the Marine Corps Marathon in 2:21:32. (Marina Cracchiolo/Medill)

Girma Bedada, 33, a member of the national Ethiopian running team, holds his trophy high Sunday after winning the Marine Corps Marathon in 2:21:32. (Marina Cracchiolo/Medill)

Marina Cracchiolo was sneakers on the ground at the 38th Marine Corps Marathon yesterday in Washington, D.C.

Marina, a student at Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern, had this report:

WASHINGTON — While what was billed as the world’s largest American flag waved before the opening ceremony of the 38th Annual Marine Corps Marathon Sunday, it was an Ethiopian native who took the top spot before a crowd of about 30,000.

Girma Bedada, 33, flashed a brilliant smile on the winners’ pedestal as he accepted his statue for finishing the third largest U.S. marathon with a time of 2:21:32.

U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Patrick Fernandez of Alexandria, Va., finished second (2:22:52). The 26-year-old won the Historic Half Marine Corps Marathon in May.

 Read the rest of the story, and see Marina’s photo gallery, over on Marine Corps Times.

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