A runner in a statewide relay sponsored by Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley's gubernatorial campaign collapsed and died of an apparent heart attack Monday while running a half-mile leg in Chinatown, police officials said.
The runner, Howard Quon, 54, a postal worker who lived in Santa Monica, was a smoker and not a regular jogger, said Christine Ung, Bradley's liaison to the Asian community who recruited Quon for the 1,000-mile statewide relay.
But he "had run 10-K races before and his family said they had no indication of health problems," she said. After unsuccessful attempts to revive him for more than an hour, he was pronounced dead at French Hospital at 1:32 p.m., hospital spokeswoman Phyllis Michaelson said. Initial police reports about the incident were confirmed by Ali Webb, press spokesman for Bradley. Quon, who was president of the local chapter of the Chinese American Citizens Alliance, an equal rights organization, was about halfway through his portion of the run when he collapsed near the corner of Spring and College streets. Bradley, who had greeted runners near Arco Plaza earlier Monday, was not present when Quon fell fatally ill, Webb said.
"We were told initially that he had fainted," Webb said. "But a few hours later the hospital called us and told us they had not been able to revive him."