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First woman to enter Boston Marathon to speak at free event in Pensacola

Photo source: West Florida Hospital

In 1967, Kathrine Switzer became the first numbered female competitor in the Boston Marathon. During the race, an official jumped off the press truck attacked her. She went on to finish the race, but it left scars on the then 20-year-old runner.

"I signed up for the race because my coach didn't believe any woman anywhere could ever run a marathon, despite the fact other women had - even a woman in Boston who'd jumped out of bushes the year before - he said 'you have to sign up for this race, you've got to prove to me and practice that you can do this distance'. And I showed him I could do it and he helped me sign up. But I signed my name K.D. Switzer and I signed the entry form that way, which by the way had no gender on the entry form," Switzer said.

She's here in Pensacola Thursday night for West Florida Hospital's 5th annual Women's Night Out.

"We could not have brought in a better person to celebrate our five years. This event is built around the fact that want to inspire women to have an impact on either their health or their community...to do something meaningful," said Kendrick Doige with West Florida Hospital.

Switzer will tell her full story at the Saenger Theatre at 188 South Palafox Place at 6 p.m. Doors open at 5 p.m.

The event is free and open to the public. CLICK here to learn more about the event.

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