Falcons' Freestyle Fundraising Since 1989

Everybody in the Pool to Assist Children's Hospital
Posted on 10/26/2021
Image of Firestone Swim Marathon(From Swimming World Magazine and written by Mia Nagle, Firestone senior captain)

On November 6, 2021, the Firestone High School Swim Team will hold its 33rd Annual Kids Helping Kids Swim Marathon. The Akron, Ohio, swim team has a storied history of success in the pool. Current University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill head swim coach and Olympic gold medalist Mark Gangloff is a program alumni, and the club has had countless other athletes race in NCAA and national-level competitions. While the program has enjoyed immense athletic success, what makes Firestone Swimming unique centers instead around the team’s dedication to service.

The Firestone Swim Marathon is an annual fundraiser and marathon swim put on by the Firestone High School swim team that benefits Akron Children’s Hospital. Since the event began in 1989, Firestone swimmers have fundraised more than $188,000 for Akron Children’s Hospital. Past proceeds from the marathon have benefited the Clifford R. Boeckman MD Regional Burn Center, the hospital’s Centennial Building Campaign, an adolescent exercise room in the Cardiology Unit, arthroscopy equipment for the Pediatric Orthopedic department, the renovation of a patient treatment room in the Toddler Unit, a pre-op room in the new Surgery Center and the in-patient rehabilitation center.

In 1996, 2000 and 2018, the team fulfilled three $20,000 pledges that went toward the aforementioned additions to the hospital. In 2007, the team fulfilled a $25,000 pledge as well as an additional $4,100 gift for the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Currently, Firestone Swimming is in its third year of a five-year, $25,000 pledge to assist with the renovation and creation of the new Akron Children’s Hospital Rehabilitation Services outpatient sub-waiting room.

To benefit the hospital, athletes on the team fundraise and swim. Throughout the day of the marathon, there is a swimmer or diver in each lane of the Firestone High School pool from 6 a.m.-6 p.m. Athletes swim for up to 12 hours straight throughout the day, with many choosing to pledge a certain amount of money for each lap completed. The community even gets involved throughout the marathon, with special guests from Akron Children’s Hospital or Firestone High School stopping by to show support for the athletes and their service to the community.

Firestone High School swimmers are currently collecting funds for the marathon and painting signs to publicize the event and show their pride for their fundraising goal. As the event approaches on November 6, the team is accepting donations through its online donation link, which can found here >>. No donation is too small. Every dollar goes toward a good cause.
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