New Zealand Olympic star Snell dies at age 80

Reuters

Posted at Dec 14 2019 08:17 AM

FILE PHOTO: Olympic 1500 meter runner New Zealand's Peter Snell, gold in Tokyo 1964, in Sydney June 22, 1999 for Olympic Week. Reuters

Famed New Zealand Olympic middle distance runner Peter Snell has died in Dallas at age 80, the New Zealand Herald reported on Saturday.

The newspaper reported sports historian and friend Ron Palenski confirmed Snell had died at his Texas home on Thursday after years of heart problems.

Palenski said Snell's wife Miki had telephoned him to share the news.

Snell, considered New Zealand's greatest athlete, won three Olympic gold medals. He took the 800 meters at the 1960 Rome Games and won both the 800 and 1,500 meters at the 1964 Tokyo Games.