SAVANNAH ā€” Police have identified a runner who collapsed and died during the Rock ā€˜nā€™ Roll Marathon in Savannah as a 58-year-old South Carolina man.

Savannah-Chatham police said in a statement that Ulysses Thomas of Fountain Inn, S.C., who was known to his friends as Tom, was running in his first marathon.

The police statement said the family has asked that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Mission of the Greenville Area Interfaith Hospitality Network or Triune Mercy Center.

Thousands of runners participated in the inaugural event Saturday in Savannah.