Roger Bannister, the first man to ever run a four-minute mile, died on Saturday. He was 88.
"Sir Roger Bannister, died peacefully in Oxford on 3 March, aged 88, surrounded by his family who were as loved by him, as he was loved by them," the statement read. "He banked his treasure in the hearts of his friends."
All at British Athletics are incredibly saddened by the passing of Sir Roger Bannister at the age of 88.
A legend in every sense of the word. pic.twitter.com/m7y5dACB4n— British Athletics (@BritAthletics) March 4, 2018
Bannister's athletic achievement was made on May 6, 1954, in Oxford, England. He clocked in at 3 minutes 59.4 seconds, a record at the time. His record only lasted 46 days, but it was enough for him to go down in history.
Additionally, the legendary runner also competed in the 1952 Olympics. He set a British record for the 1500 meter race while finishing fourth.
In 1954, Bannister retired from racing and studied neurology. While there is much less fanfare around this academic pursuit, Bannister himself hoped he would be remembered more fondly for his research achievements.
In 2011, the Olympian was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. It is unclear if that illness contributed to his death.
"I have seen, and looked after, patients with so many neurological and other disorders that I am not surprised I have acquired an illness," Bannister told BBC News in 2014. "It's in the nature of things, there's a gentle irony to it."
When news of Bannister's passing broke, reactions from admirers starting coming out on Twitter.
"RIP Sir Roger Bannister, who ran humanity’s first sub-four minute mile and went on to be a distinguished neurologist and master of Pembroke," admirer Pádraig Belton wrote. "As officer of a student club I corresponded with him occasionally; he was ever the consummate gentleman. Godspeed."0comments
Another fan wrote, "Had the pleasure of meeting Roger Bannister at a charity do once. He was surprisingly down to earth, and VERY funny."
See some of the reactions below.
RIP Sir Roger Bannister, who ran humanity’s first sub-four minute mile and went on to be a distinguished neurologist and master of Pembroke.
As officer of a student club I corresponded with him occasionally; he was ever the consummate gentleman. Godspeed. 👟 pic.twitter.com/kQbG8O4oSZ— Pádraig Belton (@PadraigBelton) March 4, 2018
We also mourn the loss today of Sir Roger Bannister, a true sporting legend and the first man to run a four-minute mile. He used to train close to Stamford Bridge at the Chelsea Barracks.— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) March 4, 2018
Sir Roger Bannister was a brilliant neurologist for four decades. He considered that to be a more important achievement than breaking the four minute mile. A humble and decent man. RIP. #RIP #rogerbannister #Athletics— Marcus Stead (@MarcusStead) March 4, 2018
Had the pleasure of meeting Roger Bannister at a charity do once. He was surprisingly down to earth, and VERY funny.— Limmy's Vines TOUR (@DaftLimmy) March 4, 2018