Bold And Brave In The Open Water

Bold And Brave In The Open Water

After hearing about the epic rescue by Florida lifeguard Daniel Lund this month when he ignored all reasonable concern for his own personal safety and paddled out 400 meters in the ocean to attempt to save a local kite surfer who had been attacked by sharks, we asked open water swimmers around the world about what they would do in such a situation.

Incredibly, Daniel singlehandedly went out to save the shark-bite victim who was bleeding profusely with a number of sharks circling around. Daniel lived up to his profession – a lifesaver – and went in, no questions asked or hesitation given.

We asked around the open water swimming community and were humbled by the number of brave open water swimmers who said that saving another person’s life injured in a pool of blood in the middle of hungry sharks goes without saying.

We also asked seven-time world champion Shelley Taylor-Smith about her experience with sharks, “I eyeballed a shark once, knowing they were out there on my swims. I had to face my fears when I prepared for my 90K Sydney-Wollongong solo marathon swim in 1995. During my Sydney-Wollongong swim, I heard my crew yell ‘NOAH NOAH’, but I did not concern myself because (1) I was in my shark cage, and (2) I had bigger problems to concern myself with. The water had dropped from 21°C to 12°C. If the shark had bit me, I really do not think I would have felt anything since I was so cold.”

During races, I have not had any sightings, but I had the sensation. Words cannot express it, but as we took off in the annual Rottnest Channel Swim, I felt a presence. The sun had not risen and I could only make out a dark large shadow below me moving too. I did not stop. I kept swimming and did not give it any more thought.”

“But only a couple of years ago did it occur to me that I had that sense of something else with me

Copyright © 2010 by Steven Munatones
Steven Munatones