Officials announced late on Friday that the New York City marathon had been canceled, according to NBC News.
NBC 4 New York, the local NBC News affiliate, reported that the marathon would not be held on Sunday after all.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg had defended his decision earlier in the day to hold the 26.2-mile race as scheduled.
The New York Times confirmed that the marathon will not be held on Sunday, after increasing pressure from runners, politicians and the general public to cancel the event in the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
The Times cited a person "familiar with the decision," and said the cancelation would be a historic move. The marathon has been held every year since 1970, including two months after the 9/11 attacks in 2001.
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"Critics said that it was in poor taste to hold a foot race through the five boroughs while so many people in the area are still suffering from the storm’s damages, and that city services should focus on storm relief, not the marathon," said The Times.
Earlier in the day, Bloomberg said going ahead with the marathon would raise money for the city and boost morale, according to CBS News.
You have to keep going and doing things," he said, "and you can grieve, you can cry and you can laugh all at the same time. That's what human beings are good at.
According to CBS News, the marathon generates an estimated $340 million in the city, and the race's organizers were planning to donate $1 million to the city.
The marathon attracts up to 47,000 runners and 12,000 volunteers, according to CNN. However, large areas of the city remain without electricity and large stretches of the New York City subway remain closed.
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