BOSTON (WHDH) - Spencer, a golden retriever known for supporting runners during the Boston Marathon, has died after battling cancer, his owner announced. 

Spencer became a symbol of support back in 2018, going viral for holding a Boston Strong flag on the marathon route. While many didn’t know Spencer until 2018, though, he actually held that flag for eight Boston Marathons, continuing to greet runners after his cancer diagnosis. 

“[H]e’s been kind of an inspiration of hope that you can do more than you think you can,” Spencer’s owner, Richard Powers, said. 

Last year, Spencer was named the official dog of the 126th Boston Marathon. 

Through the years, Powers said Spencer made the most of his life. 

“He lived life right to end, right to the fullest,” Powers said. “He was an amazing boy.”

Spencer’s mission extended far beyond the marathon route. 

He spent his whole life helping brighten people’s day in other ways, doing therapy dog work and supporting his family through the COVID-19 pandemic, among other things. 

“We recognized early on what a special boy he was,” Powers said. “He truly was an angel on earth.”

“We made kind of a mission to share him with the world because everybody needs a little uplift nowadays,” Powers said of Spencer. 

Speaking this week, Powers said Spencer fulfilled his mission.

Powers said Spencer received an “indescribable amount of love.” Powers said Spencer, in turn, sent the love back “tenfold.”

Spencer passed away last Friday. He was 13.

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