Swim for Kim – The English Channel
On June 20th, Night Train member Melissa Blaustein’s window to swim the English Channel opens. It will be an arduous, difficult task bearing cold water temperatures for up to twenty hours and 20+ miles with no wetsuit and no stopping to hold on to the boat.
But that seems like an easy task compared to the one that her swim mentor, best friend, and fellow Night Train swimmer Kimberly Chambers is currently undertaking. On May 6th, 2018 Kim was admitted to California Pacific Medical Center because she couldn’t feel her legs. A few days later, she was officially diagnosed with Guillain-Barré (Ghee-yan Bah-ray) Syndrome (GBS). This is a rare neurological illness which attacks your nerves and can render you paralyzed. Kim, the woman who has swam the oceans seven, considered the pinnacle of marathon swimming, and who was the first ever woman to swim from the Farallons to the Golden Gate Bridge, was unable to walk.
Melissa would never have begun swimming if it wasn’t for Kim. Not only did she inspire her to push herself further and to do more, she brought her along for the journey. Taking her with her to Lane 5 at North Bay Aquatics, early dips at the South End Rowing Club and on her first kayak adventure with Simon and Miguel. Kim has inspired so many of us with her strength, determination and ability to succeed. Now, Melissa is hoping to dig deep on this swim and inspire her.
Melissa will be using the swim to fundraise for the Guillan Barre Syndrome/ Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP Foundation International and will donate all funds raised in Kim Chambers’ name. Hopefully this funding will go towards earlier diagnosis, faster treatment and raising awareness about the debilitating disease she’s grappling with now. Help Melissa cross the channel and swim for Kim! Please consider donating today on the link on the right of this page, or at the bottom of the page if you are visiting this site on mobile. All donations made through the Night Train Swimmers will be sent to GBS Foundation.
** Your Contribution is tax deductible **