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Swim Across America In Stamford Nets $485K

Swimmers celebrate after finishing the Swim Across America in Greenwich and Stamford on Saturday.
Swimmers celebrate after finishing the Swim Across America in Greenwich and Stamford on Saturday. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dan Burns

STAMFORD, Conn. – Swimmers in the seventh annual Swim Across America Greenwich-Stamford Open Water Swim on Saturday raised more than $485,000 for cancer research.

The swim included 186 participants and 80 land, kayak and boat volunteers. Proceeds fund the  Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy (ACGT) Investigator Grant for a Phase I clinical trial for leukemia and lymphoma.

In seven years, the Greenwich-Stamford Swim has raised more than $1.8 million. Nationwide, Swim Across America has raised more than $45 million for cancer research, prevention and treatment and numerous other cancer-related causes since its inception in 1987.

Several individuals raised more than $10,000 each in this year's swim. Team College raised an astounding $135,000.

Team College, made up of 14 members from Madison, N.J., to Westport, was the top fundraising team with a total of $135,000. Three of Team College’s members were also top individual fundraisers, with Becky Campbell raising $40,600, Rick Campbell securing $31,600, and Chip Linehan $15,100.

The team for Peter’s Defeaters raised $34,800. Peter Carlson of Riverside, and his sister, June Hussey, who traveled from Tucson, Ariz., to participate, headed Peter’s Defeaters.

The third highest fundraising team was Kicking Cancer for Karen, Chris and Friends. Team captain Jim O’Brien of Wilton swam for the fourth year in this event.  O'Brien and his team swim for his wife, Karen, who was diagnosed with cancer. In 2011, Jim’s youngest brother Chris was diagnosed with stage four brain cancer.  Jim’s two daughters, Kristine and Caroline, who swam for the Wilton Wahoos and swam competitively for 10 years, also were on the team.

The event was founded by Darien's Matt Vossler and Fairfield's Jeff Keith. The first Swim Across America event was in Connecticut and was the first swim in the area dedicated to raising funds for cancer research.

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