In 2016, Westchester Masters teammates Dan Levy and Carrie Dillon completed the mile swim at all eight of the Westchester and Rockland County pool events supporting Swim Across America – Long Island Sound. Levy is also a big part of the Chappaqua Swim & Tennis Club pool swim, where he’s been the swim coach since 1998.
Levy made all eight events in honor of his sister, Karen, who passed away after a long battle with colon cancer in 2008.
Dillon was able to swim in seven of the events with Levy, in honor her dear friend Joe Arena, who passed away in 2016 from brain cancer.
The duo also supports Ed Hickey, who continues his daily mile swims from July 11th to September 11th in memory of his son. Hickey has reached 64% of his goal. If you’d like to support his swims, you can still do so on his Swim Across America page.
The Long Island Sound Pool Swims are a huge part of the success of SAA – Long Island Sound! We want to give thanks and recognition to the hundreds of swimmers, volunteers and donors that make all these incredible benefit pool swims happen. Get all the Swim Across America news on the Sound as it hits at the SAA – LIS Facebook page.
Sarah Cohen participated for the first time and in her own words:
I swam for my first time this year with SAA in the Lake Isle pool swim. I swam to support my mom who was diagnosed in April with metastatic melanoma. My partner, best friend and I made this video for her, and all the people who donated, of the swim … SAA has brought me some relief- a place to put my energy and focus. A way to channel all the chaos that cancer causes in a family members life- and funnel it into something good and honorable. My mom was in the hospital most of the summer, including the day of the swim- but she is home now- still battling. I hope this video can bring strength and hope.
The fourth annual SMAC Out Cancer Pool Swim was another great success, raising over $84K and counting at the San Mateo Athletic. This year’s swim featured 11 fun events, seven Olympians, and honored multiple heroes in the fight against cancer.
The four-year total raised by SMAC Out Cancer stands at an incredible $296K to fund cancer research at beneficiaries UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital and Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute. Congrats to event director Diana Thomas for putting together another great event this year.
The 2016 swim was named in memory of Jim Keller, who lost his battle with cancer in January. Keller was regarded as a brilliant and caring man that was a huge supporter of the San Mateo Athletic Club. He’s pictured here with Olympian Heather Petri in 2015.
The impact of the event was evident when the Olympians got to meet Wills Levy, a young hero that saved his brother’s life with a bone marrow transplant. The incredible and moving story of his younger brother Andrew’s battle with a rare and deadly cancer and unlikely recovery is featured in this emotional New York Times Magazine article. Olympians at the event included: Craig Beardsley, Mike Bruner, Susan Heon Preston, Roque Santos, Glenn Mills, Ellen Estes and Christine Magnuson.
The event features fun events not usually associated with SAA pool swims including an aqua aerobics boot camp, and out-of-water fitness challenge and a dance party. Check out the whole photo library to see all the breathtaking images from the event. If you’re interested in starting a pool swim in your community, learn more here.
In Pool Swims Across America, we feature local pool swims that raise awareness for cancer research. If you’re interested in getting your local swim team or pool involved, learn more here.
The Cheshire Pool Swim to Fight Cancer raised $6,400 on April 23 in Cheshire, CT. A big round of applause for high school junior Kevin Erickson for organizing and to the members of the Yale men’s swim team for coming by to participate in the great cause. Great work by everyone that came out to Cheshire Community Pool to make waves to defeat cancer!
The inaugural Belleair Country Club Pool Swim took place on May 1 at Belleair Country Club in Belleair, Fl. The BCC Breakers did a great job hitting their fundraising goal in their first year, raising $4,030 to contribute to the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa!
The 3rd Annual Swim to Win Against Cancer Pool Swim took place earlier this year in Montclair, N.J., featuring student-athletes from Montclair High School and Newark Academy.
The students participating in the annual swim challenge were lucky enough to meet and participate in a Q&A session with Dr. Taha Merghoub, visiting from an SAA beneficiary, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Merghoub is also the Co- Director of the Ludwig Collaborative and Swim Across America Lab at MSK. Sarah Dillon Soden, Associate Director, Annual Giving at MSK also spoke at the event.
The students learned how the nearly $50,000 they’ve raised over the last three years at their pool swim challenge has helped fund the SAA Lab where Dr. Merghoub investigates the pathogenesis and treatment of melanoma.
A special thanks goes out to Montclair High School Swim Coach Ed Koenigsfest and Newark Academy Swim Coach Billy Blomn for supporting SAA and creating a great pool swim challenge where the competition focuses on a common goal.
Learn more about starting an SAA Pool Swim in your community here.