March 13, 2020 / 10:52 AM / 16 days ago

Czech Olympic javelin champion Zatopkova dies aged 97

FILE PHOTO: Tears run down the face of Dana Zatopkova, the wife of the legendary Czech athlete Emil Zatopek during funeral ceremony at the National Theatre, in Prague, Czech Republic December 6, 2000. REUTERS/Petr Josek Snr/File Photo

PRAGUE (Reuters) - Czech javelin champion Dana Zatopkova, who won an Olympic gold medal on the same day her husband did in 1952, died on Friday, the Czech Olympic Committee said. She was 97.

Zatopkova won her competition at the 1952 games in Helsinki with a throw beyond 50 metres as her husband, Emil Zatopek, triumphed in the 5,000 metres race - one of the three gold medals that he brought home from the Finnish capital. He also won the 10,000 metres and the marathon races.

Born on the same date and year, Emil and Dana married in October 1948 and remained together until Emil’s death in 2000.

“The Czech sport lost one of its greatest personalities,” the Czech Olympic Committee said on its website.

Zatopkova added another Olympic medal, a silver, in Rome in 1960. She also won the European championships twice.

Reporting by Robert Muller; Editing by Angus MacSwan

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