The sun was bright, the water was (a burning hot!) 62 degrees, and spirits were soaring as Team Hydro completed its 11th swim crossing from Alcatraz Island for Hydrocephalus!
The dense fog cleared just in time for the Coast Guard to give us the final go-ahead (note the fog bank still blocking view of the ROCK in photo below, taken as the Team posed together just moments before boarding the boats to the island). Truly the day could not have been more perfect for our Swim for Hydrocephalus Research!! Every swimmer made it successfully to shore, friendships were formed, and passion and funds were generated in support of our important cause: raising awareness and funds for hydrocephalus research!!
42 swimmers signed-up for the escape, and we saw record times! Five swimmers broke the 30-minute mark, with veterans Kyle Voulgaris (23:10), Reed Gallogly (24:00), and Steven Wright (26:32) bringing it home first in blazing time. On the female side, Caitlin Hall (28:44), Kate Damrell (31:50), and Amy Squeglia (32:00) led the charge. Those really braving it for the Team were our four non-wetsuit swimmers who made the swim in incredible time despite the lack of buoyancy, as well as warmth, that a wet-suit provides! Special congrats (and admiration) to non-wet-suit swimmers: Ryan McCarthy (32:56), Kevin Buskirk (33:14), Court Austin (33:58), and Mike Waite (34:38)!!!
As quick as our swimmers were, however, they managed to be even more inspiring. Kyle Voulgaris and Kate Damrell (shown below), truly set the pace for the rest of us– not just in the water, but in our hearts as well — both live with shunted hydrocephalus, and were kind enough to speak to the pre-race crowd. Their gathered Teammates could not have been more moved or inspired as they listened to these two amazing people share their experiences with hydrocephalus, and demonstrate their personal commitment to raising research funds, in hopes that one day, others will not need suffer the surgeries, pain, medical complications, and ongoing uncertainty that they bravely endure every day of their lives.
Also among the ranks of Team Hydro were ~20 members of Genentech’s neuroscience division, as well as researchers, parents/siblings of hydrocephalus patients, and a whole bunch of fantastic friends.
Team Hydro is on a record setting pace with regard to fundraising as well, with over $112,000 raised even before the end of the swim. But we can’t stop there! We need to keep pressing forward–
Support the cause at http://donate.teamhydro.org. and remember, 100% of EVERY donation directly supports desperately needed research!
To all who helped to make today so special– from our SWIMMERS, to our incredible VOLUNTEERS , SUPPORTERS, and DONORS– thank you!
Team Hydro is especially Grateful to all those at Genentech who helped make this day such an incredible SUCCESS!
We cant wait to see you all again!!
Go Team Hydro! Don’t Not Try!