Thursday, September 5, 2013

Congratulations Diana Nyad
Never Give Up

Not sure if Diana Nyad is a grandmother, however at age 64 she is an inspiration to this Oma. 

Endurance swimmer Diana Nyad, right, and her trainer Bonnie Stoll hug
after Nyad walks ashore in Key West, Fla. after swimming from Cuba.
(J. Pat Carter / Associated Press / September 2, 2013)
The #1 Google search in the world on September 23-24, 2011 was the then 62-year-old Diana Nyad's valiant attempt to swim the seemingly impossible 103 miles between Cuba and Florida, without a shark cage. 1.3 million Twitter fans followed Diana as she lived out the message of living life large and chasing our dreams, no matter our age. Despite potentially deadly Box Jellyfish stings, Diana courageously continued toward the other shore for 41 long hours, eventually compromised by the physical effects of the stings.

Diana is not one to quit. August 2012, a year later, she again faced the seemingly impossible, this time with a secret weapon: a jellyfish suit, a thin nylon covering that prevents stings. But again, Diana's Xtreme Dream was not to be. She swam 51 hours, 5 minutes, much of the country following her every stroke. Again the jellyfish attacked, striking her repeatedly on the lips, where the nylon suit opens to allow her to breathe. There were life-threatening lightning storms. Large sharks circled below her. The powerful Gulf Stream current literally spun the Teams fleet compasses in circles, shoving Diana on a winding route of nearly 100 miles through the water!

However, never giving up, last Monday the 64-year old athlete made her extreme dream come true!

Two miles from the end of the swim Monday morning, Nyad stopped to address her support crew.

"This is a lifelong dream of mine and I'm very very glad to be with you," she told her team, according to an update on her website. "Some on the team are the most intimate friends of my life and some of you I've just met. But I'll tell you something, you're a special group. You pulled through; you are pros and have a great heart. So let's get going so we can have a whopping party."

In the end, emerging from the great big ocean wearing a blue swimming cap and goggles -- and having swum roughly 110 miles in 52 hours and 54 minutes -- Diana Nyad still had enough strength to walk ashore Monday.

Upon reaching shore at Smathers Beach in Key West, Fla., Nyad had three things to tell the mob of onlookers who had watched her achieve a lifelong dream.

“One is, we should never ever give up,” said a slightly dazed Nyad, whose slurred remarks were received with a roar by the crowd. “Two is, you’re never too old to chase your dreams.

“Three is, it looks like a solitary sport, but it’s a team," Nyad concluded and then was taken away on a stretcher for medical examination.

Congratulations Ms. Nyad! Oma thinks of you often as she swims her laps.

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