WATCH: Elite runner crawls across finish line at Austin Marathon

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AUSTIN, Texas -- Her body gave out, but not her spirit.

Hyvon Ngetich of Kenya was leading the Austin Marathon on Sunday at the 23-mile mark when her body started to give out. Near the end, she began crawling on her hands and knees toward the finish line.

Medics and race volunteers offered help, including the use of a wheelchair, but Ngetich refused, wanting to get across the finish line on her own.

"You ran the bravest race and crawled the bravest crawl I have ever seen in my life. You have earned much honor, and I am going to adjust your prize money so you get the same prize money you would have gotten if you were second," Austin Marathon race director John Conley told KEYE-TV.

Cynthia Jerop of Kenya took first in the women's marathon in 2 hours, 54 minutes, 22 seconds.

But the real winner was Ngetich.