Murray Halberg has always lived with passion and purpose. Throughout his running career, he pushed further and went well beyond the ordinary. A fitting namesake for a Ryman village, Murray is a Kiwi pioneer.
An Auckland local, Murray was coached by Arthur Lydiard since 1951. He gained recognition three years into his running career, winning his first national title at senior level. And went on to break world records in races around the globe.
On and off the running track, Murray is a notable national figure. The well decorated Olympic Games gold medallist founded the Halberg Foundation in 1963, sparking more than 50 years of service to athletics. The Halberg Foundation’s vision is “for an inclusive New Zealand”. Committed to enhancing the lives of physically disabled New Zealanders by enabling them to participate in sport and recreation.
Motivated by his own disability, Murray took up running after suffering a severe rugby injury resulting in a withered left arm and months of rehabilitation. Murray took up running the next year and the rest is internationally recognised history. Notably, he became the first New Zealander to break four minutes for the mile.
His many accolades include New Zealand Sportsman of the Year 1958, Member of the Order of the British Empire in 1961, and a Knight Bachelor in 1988. Murray was appointed to the Order of New Zealand in June 2008. He was then awarded the prestigious Blake Medal the month after, one of only 4 recipients at the time.
We’re proud to have named a village in Auckland after Murray Halberg.