The Tinman Triathlon, held on Oahu since 1980, was renamed in 2017 in honor of late Honolulu firefighter Clifford Rigsbee.
The Cliff Rigsbee Tinman Triathlon will be held on Sunday, July 23.
The 63-year-old was injured during a rescue exercise in rough waters off Diamond Head on June 14, 2016. He died two days later.
In addition to being a 21-year veteran of the Honolulu Fire Department, Rigsbee was known to many as an elite triathlete and coach.
“Cliff won the race twice,” Rigsbee’s former training partner, Debbie Hornsby, told Living808. “He’s been a constant volunteer. He has coached thousands, thousands of athletes who have successfully completed the race. It’s a really fitting honor that it gets renamed in his honor this year.
“The Tinman, being a people’s race, he encouraged so many folks to, for the first time, people who never thought they could actually complete a triathlon get to the finish line. He just had a spirit that would never quit,” she added.
Hornsby, a recognized triathlete herself, last completed the race in 1999. She says she will come out of retirement to participate this year.
“I couldn’t miss this one. It is so wonderful that it’s honoring someone who’s been so important in this community, not just to me, but to countless athletes,” she said. “I’m sure there will be a couple of tears along the way, but it really is going to be a celebration and it honors a really wonderful man.”