Olympic gold winning sprinter Irena Szewinska dies at 72

June 30, 2018 - 8:28 am

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Irena Szewinska, a Polish sprinter who dominated women's athletics for two decades, winning seven Olympic medals, has died at 72.

Szewinska's husband and former coach, Janusz Szewinski, said she died shortly before midnight Friday in a Warsaw hospital after a battle with cancer. In its reports, the Polish news agency PAP on Saturday described her as the most famous athlete in Polish sports history.

Polish President Andrzej Duda remembered her as the "First Lady of Polish sport," saying her death was "a great loss and great sadness."

Szewinska competed in five Olympics, winning gold medals in the 400-meter relay in 1964, in the 200 meters in 1968 and the 400 meters in 1976. She was a 10-time world record holder in the 100, 200 and 400 meter races.

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