Sunny Lowry, Giving And Sharing A Long Life Of Service

Sunny Lowry, Giving And Sharing A Long Life Of Service

Sunny Lowry, Giving And Sharing A Long Life Of Service

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Sunny Lowry in 1933
From Lorna Cochran who swims the aQuellé Midmar Mile in her 90’s to Dr. Otto Thaning who completed a crossing of the English Channel at the age of 73, longevity among open water swimmers is well established.

One of the most remarkable individuals who demonstrated longevity in different capacities was Great Britain’s Sunny Lowry, MBE. She served as the President of the Channel Swimming Association at the death of Commander Gerald Forsberg, who served as President for 37 years.

Over the next seven years, she led the Channel Swimming Association until she retired in November 2007. Shortly thereafter, she died on February 21st 2008 at the age of 97.

Earlier in her career, she became successful in crossing the English Channel in in 15 hours 41 minutes in August 1933 after two unsuccessful attempts in 1932 after 14 hours and in July 1933 after 6 hours. Her legacy – that includes 75 years of service to the sport – is annually remembered with the awarding of the Sunny Lowry Trophy awarded by the Channel Swimming Association.

At the age of 94, she was awarded an MBE (Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) in Great Britain for services to swimming in the North-West. Earlier, she has been recognized by the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame as an Honor Administrator in its Class of 2003.

Lowry and her husband Bill were also involved and a leader in teaching swimming to the disabled, lifesaving, and pilot lifesaving. Following a tragedy on Lake Windermere, together they started the Pilot Lifesaving Scheme, a safety program.

Upon her passing, her niece Anne Signol said, “Sunny was a truly inspirational woman. She was always positive and the word ‘no’ was never an option to her. She touched the lives of so many people, from the thousands of children she taught to swim, to the many friends of Victoria Baths. Swimming was her true love and despite losing her sight, she was still dipping into the water even in her 90s.”

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Steven Munatones