Back when women had no say, Tersilla ran Around the Bay


Staff member
Feb 15, 2004
The Beach Strip
What was strictly against the rules then is something to celebrate now, writes Paul Wilson.
February 19th, 2019 Paul Wilson Special to The Hamilton Spectator

Tersilla with her trophy to commemorate being the first woman to run the Around the Bay Road Race in 1975. - Gary Yokoyama,The Hamilton Spectator

Three years ago, Tersilla Komac got the satisfaction of seeing four grandchildren run the Around the Bay. From left, Leah Shaunessy and Nicki, Kelly and Christopher Komac wear Just Like Nonna T-shirts. - Family photo

When Tersilla grew up in Italy, she didn’t run but she did like to ride. That’s her with the bicycle. - Family photo

A Burlington Y running group called Magnificent 7 added Tersilla Komac to its ranks, and in the 1970s encouraged her to run the Around the Bay — even though women weren’t allowed. - Family photo
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Tersilla Komac is getting a plaque in her honour on the Hamilton Beach Strip.
The reason? A long time ago, she went somewhere she wasn't supposed to. And a year later, she went there again.
She went around the Bay, is what she did. Just up and joined a race women that weren't supposed to run.
But what was strictly against the rules then is something to celebrate now.
Tersilla, 86, smiles at the thought of her image and story on a plaque for all to see.

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