Fun runner hit by tree branch dies in hospital

ninemsn staff
5:20am April 2, 2013

A fun runner has died of his injuries after being struck by a falling tree branch during Brisbane's Twilight Running Festival last week.

Canadian Joe Kelly, 58, was felled by the branch after a fierce storm interrupted a fun run at St Lucia, in Brisbane's inner west, on March 24.

The avid distance runner was in a critical condition and survived for five days before succumbing to head injuries last Friday, The Courier-Mail reported.

He and his wife Laura reportedly were near the end of a two-year stay in Australia when Mr Kelly was hit by the large branch.

The couple had moved to Australia for work but had spent their last three months touring the country with plans to return to Canada to retire.

"He just touched everyone's lives - they both have," the local Twin Towns Triathlon Club president Val Lambard was quoted as saying.

"He was enthusiastic, he loved his sport and he always had this wonderful smile on his face."

Mr Kelly's daughters had flown to Queensland to be by his side as he battled his injuries in hospital.

A news article in his local town of Prince George, in the province of British Columbia, praised Mr Kelly for his athleticism and ability to inspire others.

"Joe was a people-person who encouraged everybody to do their best," one long-time friend said.

Sources: Prince George Citizen, The Courier Mail

Author: Erin Tennant

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