The New York Marathon was canceled Friday in the wake of criticism that the race should not take place as the city struggles to recover from Hurricane Sandy.


Earlier Friday, Mayor Michael Bloomberg had insisted that the race would take place Sunday despite some New Yorkers saying that holding the race would be insensitive and tie up police, generators and other resources when many are still suffering.


Joan Wacks, whose Staten Island waterfront condo was swamped with 4 feet of water, had predicted authorities would still have been recovering bodies when the estimated 40,000 runners from around the world would have hit the streets for the 26.2-mile race. She had called the mayor “tone deaf.”

“He is clueless without a paddle to the reality of what everyone else is dealing with,” she said. “If there are any resources being put toward the marathon, that’s wrong. I’m sorry, that’s wrong.”


At a news conference, Bloomberg had defended his decision as a way to raise money for the stricken city and boost morale six days after Sandy flooded neighborhoods, knocked out power to hundreds of thousands homes and businesses and killed at least 39 people.


Bloomberg said New York “has to show that we are here and we are going to recover” and “give people something to cheer about in what’s been a very dismal week for a lot of people.”


“You have to keep going and doing things,” he said, “and you can grieve, you can cry and you can laugh all at the same time. That’s what human beings are good at.”