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Devin Wahl '12, Siblings Attempt English Channel Swim

Siblings Hope to Raise Money to Fight Alzheimer's

From left, Dustin, Danielle, and Devin Wahl ’12

Three siblings will attempt to make history by swimming the English Channel at the same time on July 22.

Danielle, Dustin, and Devin Wahl '12 also hope to raise $20,000 or more for the fight against Alzheimer's Disease, which affects millions of people every year, including two members of their immediate family.

"Our uncle, Konrad, is currently in the last stages of his battle with dementia," Devin wrote on his blog. "He is our favorite uncle and we have a lot of fond memories of him. He always had a big smile and supported us fully in our endeavors. A large part of this swim is in honor of Uncle Konrad.

"Our grandpa, Jerry, passed away from the disease when we were young. Although we were young at the time, grandpa remains in our memories."

Considered the Mt. Everest for endurance swimmers, the English Channel is 21 miles across from near Dover, England, to Calais, France. The route crosses one of the world's busiest shipping lanes and is filled with other obstacles such as dangerous currents and blooms of  jellyfish.

The average water temperature in July is between 59 and 65 degrees and the crossing can last anywhere between 10 and 20 hours.

"The channel is an incredibly dangerous swim and athletes often suffer from extreme cramping, sickness, and hypothermia," Devin wrote. "We want to prove that through dedication, diligence, and enthusiasm, one can accomplish extraordinary and seemingly impossible goals."

Devin, who earned honorable-mention All-America honors in the 800-yard freestyle relay during his senior year at Colorado College, and Dustin are making their first attempt to swim the English Channel.

Danielle, CC's record holder in the three freestyle distance events, was an honorable mention All-American in the 1650 free in 2012. She swam the English Channel successfully in 2013, crossing in nine hours and 49 minutes.

Danielle swam at Colorado College as a freshman and then transferred to Centre College. Dustin also swims for Centre. 

Mathew Webb was the first to swim the channel in 1875, crossing in 21 hours and 45 minutes.

To learn more about the Wahl's challenge or make a donation, visit their web page: http://wahlchannelcrossing.org/.