BOSTON (AP) — Some of the biggest names in Boston Marathon history are backing an effort to put up a statue honoring the first woman to complete the race — an accomplished sculptor who has been commissioned to create the piece.
The 120th marathon next week marks the 50th anniversary of Roberta "Bobbi" Gibb's pioneering run in 1966, when women were not even allowed to register. She hid in the bushes at the starting line in her brother's Bermuda shorts, pulled her hood up to hide her ponytail, and jumped into the all-male pack of runners.
Those who know her say Gibb, now in her 70s, is modest and has never tried to exploit her groundbreaking run for personal gain. She admits she's a little uncomfortable creating a statue of herself, but she's doing it to honor the tens of thousands of women who have followed her footsteps.
"I'm really embarrassed doing a sculpture of myself, so I would prefer to do a generic woman, maybe with the names of the first 50 women's winners," Gibb, who studied at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts School and still runs almost every day, said from her studio north of Boston.