Athletics in Wales is deeply saddened to hear about the death of former Welsh first minister, friend and athletics advocate, Rhodri Morgan.
Mr Morgan served as first minister from 2000 to 2009 before Mr Carwyn Jones took over as first minister and Welsh Labour leader.
Cardiff born Mr Morgan was a long-time supporter of Athletics in Wales and became a patron alongside Lynn Davies CBE and John Disley CBE in 2013.
A former athlete himself and member of Roath Harriers, Mr Morgan supported many athletics events in Wales as well as presenting awards at Welsh Athletics ceremonies.
Carol Anthony, Chair of Welsh Athletics said,
“We were honoured to have had Rhodri Morgan as our Patron. He was a great support to Welsh Athletics and was always keenly interested in developments in the sport. His enthusiastic and engaging presence at our events will be greatly missed by everyone.
“We have lost a loyal and committed advocate for our sport who will always remembered by the family of athletics in Wales”
President of Welsh Athletics, Lynnette Harries said,
“A number of individuals from the athletics family in Wales were privileged to be present at the Welsh Sport Hall of Fame celebrations last Friday when Rhodri spoke so eloquently about past and current sporting icons.
“His infectious enthusiasm for our sport over the years has been immense. As Patron of Welsh Athletics, he was highly respected by all - athletes, coaches and administrators. We have lost a true friend and he will be sadly missed.”
Mr Morgan was a champion of sport in the Principality and became an ambassador of Run 4 Wales - the event delivery team behind the Cardiff Half Marathon and other mass participation events - on its inception in 2012.
Matt Newman, Chief Executive of both Welsh Athletics and Run 4 Wales, said,
“Mr Morgan was a true champion of active lives in Wales, and we are all saddened by his passing. Known as ‘The Father of Wales’, he was a prominent figure for those aiming to achieve healthier lifestyles.
“He was an inspired leader, a great man and our deepest condolences go out to Julie and the family. He will live long in the hearts of us all.”