Dozens of kids swim from Alcatraz

May 1, 2008 12:13:42 PM PDT
Dozens of young people Thursday dove into the chilly Bay to swim from Alcatraz to San Francisco.

The kids left on a boat from Hyde Street Pier and swam back to shore. The group was from Arizona and called 'Team Alcatraz.' They were inspired by then 7-year-old Braxton Bilbrey's 2006 swim, when he became the youngest person to swim from Alcatraz. Bilbrey does plan to do it again this year. He does it to raise awareness for drowning prevention.

One of those swimming on Thursday was Joe Underwood. He is an 11-year-old who suffers from spinal bifida and is confined to a wheelchair. The youngest swimmer is eight-year-old Thea Cartier. She was a little bit nervous about the swim and was most worried about the seals.

"Everybody said to look out for the sharks, except they are on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge, expect the seals they are pushy, so they get close up to you. You never know what they are going to do," said Thea Cartier, swimmer.

"I can't kick but I get used to it. I'm pretty good at it - I have seven national titles," said Joe Underwood, swimmer.

There were about 50 kids in the water for the 1.5 mile swim. Fifty adults swam along side them and there were 25 boats surrounding them. The coach said the theme of the swim was escape your limitations - and he believes the kids certainly did that.


Load Comments