On September 25th, 2021, three-time Olympian Elizabeth Beisel completed the 10.4-mile ocean swim from mainland Rhode Island to Block Island. Elizabeth partnered with Swim Across America for “Block Cancer” to honor her father, Ted Beisel, who passed in 2021 after a battle with pancreatic cancer. Elizabeth became the first woman to successfully complete the swim raising over $160,000.
In addition to the $160,000 Elizabeth raised, Swim Across America raised an additional $500,000, with appreciation to the Lustgarten Foundation, to create a $660,000 grant bucket. The $660,000 is being applied to three grants to fight pancreatic cancer in honor of Ted Beisel:
a) A $60,000 grant to Dr. Peter Yu (NYU) pancreatic research metabolism study was awarded in 2022 b) A $300,000 grant to Dr. Ajay Goel (City of Hope) to conduct research for pancreatic detection was awarded in 2023 c) A $300,000 grant for pancreatic research will be announced in April of 2024
Photo: Elizabeth presents the award to Dr. Yu at Swim Across America—Rhode Island
On September 25th, three-time Olympian and 2016 Team USA Captain Elizabeth Beisel made history as the first woman to swim the 10.4 miles from mainland Rhode Island to Block Island. She undertook this open-water challenge as a fundraiser for Swim Across America (SAA) to benefit cancer research and patient programs in honor of her father, Charles “Ted” Lyons Beisel, who passed away from pancreatic cancer in July. To date this charity swim has raised over $163,000.
Thanks to photographer Cate Brown, we have some great images to share from that historic day below.