I want to begin with an apology. When I read of the death of a swimmer at the Alcatraz Challenge I presumed the swimmer; whose name is Sally, was a swimmer who may not have been prepared for how hard the swim is. I did not state that implicitly but perhaps it came across tacitly. It was never my intention to blame the victim and I should have rephrased my comments without associating them with a Alcatraz tragedy. My comments did offend those that knew her and I want to apologize.
In my post I primarily blamed pop-culture media who frequently feature human interests story about dogs, children or even naked people making the swim and I stately bluntly that this sort of reporting inspires people to attempt an Alcatraz swim when in fact they are summarily not qualified. I have seen several examples of this each year.
The swimmer who passed at Alcatraz last Sunday was named, Sally, and she was definitely qualified to do this swim. I am going to post a letter that Scott Davis, a friend of hers sent me:
Sally was an original member of our 'Y' Master's swim team and we had been swimming 10,000 - 12,000 yards per week in our practices for more than a year. I believe she had also been invited to compete in some Senior Olympic events in butterfly and had also completed the swim leg in an Olympic distance triathlon in open water earlier this year.
I was part of her group that swam the Alcatraz Challenge and the conditions were horrible. We don't know what happened, but out of respect for Sally, please don't make a comment unless you know what you are talking about. "
Scott, I apologive to you and anyone else who was offended by my post.