The Consul General of Greece on Thursday presented four olive branch wreaths to the Boston Athletic Association, which will be used to crown the winners of Monday’s 123rd running of the Boston Marathon.
The wreaths are offered in the name of Stylianos Kyriakides a true humanitarian, patriot, and marathon champion.
His 1946 Boston Marathon victory, over renowned marathoner Johnny Kelley, is still considered one of the most memorable in Boston Marathon history.
After his victory, Kyriakides stayed in the United States raising funds and medical supplies for his countrymen who were suffering from the aftermath of WW II. Upon returning home he was met in the streets of Athens by a million people.
Consul General of Greece, Stratos Efthymiou, said that the four gold wreaths are cut from the plains of Marathon, as a gift from the people of Greece.
“These wreaths connect Boston and Greece with the Boston Marathon and the ideals of democracy and liberty,” says Efthymiou.
“The Marathon is a time when the connection between our countries shines brightest,” said Boston Mayor Marty Walsh at a ceremony, organized by Greek-American non-profit organization Alpha Omega Council, attended by over 400 people at the Great Hall of Flags in the Massachusetts State House.