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LONDON (AP) – Roger Bannister, the first runner to break the 4-minute barrier in the mile, has died. He was 88.

roger bannister Roger Bannister, First Runner To Break 4 Minute Mile, Dies

OXFORD, ENGLAND – JULY 10: In this handout image provided by LOCOG, Former record breaking athlete Sir Roger Bannister (L) passes the Flame to Torchbearer 001 Nicola Byrom on the track at Iffley Road Stadium at the start of day 53 of the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay leg from Oxford to Reading on July 10, 2012 in Oxford, England. (Photo by LOCOG via Getty Images)

Bannister’s family said in a statement that he died peacefully on Saturday in Oxford.

On a windy late afternoon in Oxford on May 6, 1954, Bannister ran four laps on a cinder track in 3 minutes, 59.4 seconds to crack the mythical 4-minute mile – a feat many had thought humanly impossible.

A few months later in 1954, Bannister beat Australian rival John Landy in the “Miracle Mile” or “Mile of the Century” at the Empire Games in Vancouver, British Columbia as both men ran under 4 minutes.

Bannister then gave up running to pursue a long and distinguished medical career.

(Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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