Authorities identify man who died during Harlingen race

File Photo

Authorities have identified a man who died after running in a weekend race in Harlingen.

Harlingen police said 37-year-old Manuel Ricardo Cuesta died on Saturday morning.

The San Benito man had just finished running in the South Texas Sizzler 5K when he collapsed.

A doctor and nurse at the scene tried to administer first aid until paramedics arrived.

An ambulance took Cuesta to the Valley Baptist Medical Center where he died.

Investigators believe that Cuesta died from a heart attack.

Cuesta leaves behind a wife and a 7-year-old boy who were both at the race.

Co-Workers Speak

Simon Mata with Alta Vista Rehab & Healthcare said Cuesta worked at the Brownsville facility.

Mata said Cuesta was there running with co-workers.

"He was loved by his patients and by all his co-workers," Mata told Action 4 News.

Employees with the clinic are setting up a special bank account for Cuesta's family but the details won't be announced or finalized until Tuesday morning.

Organizers Speak

Although there were police stationed to direct traffic at the race, organizers confirmed that there was not an ambulance or paramedic crew stationed there.

Natalie Leal with the Junior League of Harlingen said the organization will continue to hold the annual race but in future editions will coordinate with EMS.

The group plans to reach out to Cuesta's family and issued the following the statement on its Facebook fan page on Monday afternoon:

In regards to the medical emergency at the South Texas Sizzler last Saturday, we want to express our deep heartbreak over what the family of this runner must be experiencing.Thank you to all the first responders who worked so hard to help this runner. Our prayers are with the family and friends at this time.

With deepest sympathy,Jr League of Harlingen