Entries in Swimmer (5)


Diana Nyad Pulled from the Water Before End of Historic Swim

ADALBERTO ROQUE/AFP/Getty Images(KEY WEST, Fla.) -- Endurance swimmer Diana Nyad was pulled from the water early Tuesday morning, prematurely ending her attempted Cuba-to-Florida swim.

Tuesday afternoon, she completed a symbolic swim to the Florida shore and then proceeded to talk about the journey.

"Could I say there is no disappointment?" she asked, pausing to spit water. "No."

She thanked her team and talked to the gathered crowd about her lifelong quest to "cross this ocean," and then seemed to look faint, easing herself down. But she continued to talk.

Would she do it again? The answer seemed to be "no." It wasn't the fatigue, the pain, the hunger or even the circling sharks but the jellyfish that did her in. "With those things, the swim just isn't fun," she said.

Nyad was attempting to become the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage. Wednesday is her 63rd birthday.

[See Photos from Diana Nyad's Journey]

Support crews pulled Nyad out of the water at 12:55 a.m., but they only revealed it hours later as they gave a phone interview to ABC News' Good Morning America.

"We pulled her out of the water," Steven Munatones told Robin Roberts. "The dangers were so great that we couldn't risk anyone's life, including her own."

Munatones was the official observer of the swim and the editor-in-chief of the Daily News of Open Water Swimming.

It was Nyad's fourth attempt to complete the swim.

Support crews monitoring Nyad told GMA that Nyad had severe sunburn, a strained bicep muscle and could barely walk. Her lips and tongue had become increasingly swollen overnight, puffing up because of salt water. Members of her support crew of 63, which included multiple boats, had slathered her face and full-body wetsuit with black-tinted lanolin to keep the jellyfish and the cold at bay.

Team members said she had been struck at least four times by jellyfish during her voyage. Jellyfish stings had also cut short her attempt to make the crossing in 2011. This was Nyad's third attempt to complete the swim in less than a year.

During the arduous journey, which began late Saturday night, Nyad was not allowed to touch or be touched by any of the support crews or vessels. At a pace of 50 strokes a minute, the swim was expected to take 60 hours.

A squall with winds of 14 knots hit the flotilla Sunday and stayed "nearly stationary over" Nyad, forcing her to move northwest in order to try to find a way out of the storm.

Nyad ended her last attempt in September 2011 after more than 40 hours, 67 nautical miles of swimming and two Portuguese man o' war stings.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Diana Nyad Makes Another Attempt to Swim From Cuba to Florida

Adalberto Roque/AFP/Getty Images(HAVANA, Cuba) -- Diana Nyad will make another attempt to swim from Cuba to Florida after failing to reach her goal in August.

This time, the 62-year-old endurance swimmer from Los Angeles said she's ready for the planned 60-hour journey which she began in Havana on Friday night.

"I'm prepared and even saying that though, how many times do you get to do something of this big an adventure? You know, how many times do you get to feel this alive? This awake and alive?" said Nyad.

An asthma attack ended her attempt last month after 29 hours in the water. She was 15 mph off course due to strong currents, according to Tweets on her page at the time.

Nyad is hoping to break her own world record for open-water swimming without a shark cage. A swimmer from Australia finished a swim from Cuba to the Keys in 1997 but used a cage.

If she completes the swim, she would break her 1979 record, where she swam 102.5 miles from the Bahamas to Florida.

"I feel in better shape at 62 than I was at 28, which is the first time I tried this, 28 years old. I'm not as fast as I was then and I'm a little fatter but that's ok," she said.

Well wishers cheered Nyad on as she began her swim Friday.

On Nyad's twitter account, her assistants have been updating the public of the swimmer's progress.

At one point, it appeared she was stung by a moon jelly.

"Chief handler Bonnie Stoll said, "Diana was stung along both arms the side of her body and her face," in a message posted on her Twitter account.

After changing suits and rehydrating, Nyad continued her journey.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


US Swimmer Diana Nyad Forced to End Swim from Cuba to Florida

ADALBERTO ROQUE/AFP/Getty Images(HAVANA) -- Long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad's quest to become the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without using a shark cage came to an end early Tuesday due to "5 to 10 knot winds and less than ideal currents," her team tweeted.

CNN reports the 61-year-old American swimmer had trouble going through ocean swells and faced shoulder pain and asthma.  Nyad was also vomiting when she was taken out of the water and boarded onto a boat at 12:45 a.m. Tuesday, almost halfway into her estimated 60-hour journey, according to CNN.

"I am not sad.  It was absolutely the right call," she told CNN.

Prior to giving up her 103-mile swim, Nyad's team tweeted that "she was surrounded by dolphins and a beautiful Caribbean sunset."

"But strong currents blew her 15mph off course," and "The combination of factors was too much to safely continue," her team posted on Twitter.

Nyad set out to complete the feat on Sunday, jumping into the water at 7:45 p.m. off Havana's Marina Hemingway.  Her latest attempt was her second -- she had previously tried to finish the journey back in 1978 at the age of 28.  Swimming inside a shark cage at the time, she was forced to quit nearly 42 hours into the swim because of strong currents and heavy winds.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Update: Swimmer Diana Nyad Going ‘Strong’

Adalberto Roque/AFP/Getty Images)(HAVANA) -- According to Diana Nyad's Twitter account Monday, the 61-year-old long-distance swimmer is still going "strong" as she tries to swim from Havana, Cuba, to Key West despite the threat of sharks and the overall exhaustion that comes with traveling 103 miles in the ocean.

"If I go unconscious, that's one thing," one tweet read at 12:13 p.m. ET. "But no one is going to make me get out of the water; that will never happen."

On Sunday, at the Hemingway Marina in Havana, before starting the nearly 60-hour journey, the endurance swimmer played "Reveille" on a bugle, thanked those who had come to cheer her on and then entered the water wearing a black swimsuit and blue swim cap.

"The adrenaline's flowing now," Nyad said, looking out at the water. "I think this is my day."

Last month, Nyad told ABC News that an approaching birthday had sparked a desire to attempt a feat she had failed to complete when she was 28 years old.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


American Swimmer Diana Nyad Begins Swim from Cuba to Florida

ADALBERTO ROQUE/AFP/Getty Images(HAVANA) -- Long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad set out on her quest Sunday night to become the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without being enclosed in a shark cage.

At 7:45 p.m., Nyad jumped into the water at Havana's Marina Hemingway to begin her 103-mile swim to Florida, her team reported in her online blog.

During her journey, which is estimated to take about 60 hours, she will be followed by a team of doctors, nutritionists and even specialists trained to deter sharks that may get in her way.  Nyad's crew will also be utilizing a device that emits electrical currents to repel the ocean predators.

Prior to setting off for her swim, Nyad told reporters, "I'm almost 62 years old and I'm standing here at the prime of my life."

She noted that the weather and water conditions were ideal for her journey.

"Now I look out at a dead, flat calm, so I think this is my day," the American swimmer said.

Strong currents and heavy winds kept Nyad from accomplishing the feat when she first attempted it back in 1978 at the age of 28.  The endurance swimmer lasted nearly 42 hours before she was taken out of the water. During that attempt, she swam in a shark cage.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio