Letter From Our Sponsor – The LA Tri Club
Several weeks ago, I was approached by Coach Kenneth of One with the Water to see if the LA TRI Club and Coast2Coast Swim Challenge would be interested in supporting one of his programs. He told me that Pali High had a program that taught children and several adults with physical and mental disabilities how to swim, but based on budget cutbacks, this program was being eliminated. He told me about some children in the program and how this type of stimulation was helping them mentally and physically, so LA TRI Club stepped up and sponsored the classes.
On Sunday afternoon, I went to Pali High to watch the kids and Coach Kenneth in action. Well, that was one of the most rewarding afternoons I have spent in a long time. I will make this short and you will get the message. I showed up to see 8 kids in the water, some with physical issues and some with other issues. I locked in on two people whom Kenneth was with, a young boy whose wheelchair was on the edge of the pool, and another who was trying to kick. The boy who had the wheelchair is Jerry, and he is a student at Pali who has MS. He loves to swim and, according to Kenneth, this makes him stronger. He swam 700 yards yesterday. Yes, that is 700 yards with his arms and struggling to hold his body above the water, but he never quit! Every time he touched the edge, he had a smile on his face that could light up the world. It was amazing to watch. Juan, the other person in the water, has had two hip replacements and is on disability, but he finds swimming the key to returning to a active life at such a young age (34 years old). He would swim from one end to the other and then kick. You could tell swimming was something new to him, but he was feeling so accomplished after every lap.
There were other children in the pool and all seemed to be enjoying the lessons as well as the attention of Kenneth and his staff. When I walked away from the pool, I realized why we do what we do. The LA TRI Club has made an impact on kids all over the southland. Now, once again, we have stepped forward to help a Coach have the ability to give kids the opportunity to swim, exercise, and most importantly, feel accomplished.
We finish a race and feel accomplished. These young boys and girls feel the same way after a lap or half a lap. The entire staff at C2C and the LA TRI Club Board wants you to know how much your participation in our swimming impacts the lives of all the kids we have taught, and continue to teach, to swim. Without you, the members, these children we have touched from Bethune to Carson to Culver to Pali would be without a wonderful program that is improving their lives. Keep it up!
Larry Turkheimer, Glen, Roberta, Melanie, Kirsten, Paul, Liz, Lisa etc., etc., etc.
To assist us in providing lessons to others like Jerry, please consider a tax-deductible donation to One with the Water.
Kenny is a baby Bottlenose dolphin, of the genus Tursiops, one of the most common and well-known members of the family Delphinidae, the family of oceanic dolphin. He is very playful and friendly and loves to frequently leap above the water surface. Kenny plays with water toys, enjoys making bubble rings, and plays well with other dolphins or other animals.