USC junior is first to swim Maui Nui Channel

first_imgUSC junior Becca Mann is the first person to complete the Maui Nui Channel swim, accomplishing the task in just under 21 hours.  (Photo courtesy of Becca Mann) “When it was totally dark, I turned onto my back and did some backstroke, and the stars were the brightest I’d ever seen because the moon hadn’t risen yet,” Mann said. “And it was just pitch black with all these glistening stars, and I felt like I could touch them because they were so bright and so close.” Whether she continues on to the Olympic trials or focuses on her studies, Mann hopes to continue to push herself to new heights both in and out of the water. “For this event, I just went into it,” Mann said. “I didn’t know how to train for it. I don’t even know how you can train for 20 hours … I knew that my body could do it because it was just one day of my life, and I’d spent so many hours in the water just training and pushing myself. I knew that I could physically do it; it was just going to be a matter of mentally conquering it.” Mann said she wants to take on the channel swim again one day, but she isn’t sure what else the future has in store for her in regard to swimming. Although she came up short at the qualifying event for the 10-kilometer race in next year’s Olympic Games, Mann qualified for the upcoming pool Olympic trials and is still deciding whether she will compete. After taking a year off from school to train for the Olympics, Mann has resumed her studies at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts as a screenwriting major.  “[My parents] were driving her to the practice, and I packed my bag and snuck in with her and joined the swim team, and I just never looked back,” Mann said. “I love swimming so much, the idea of my goals and reaching for them and challenging myself. It really allows me to push myself as far as I can go.” Despite the grueling nature of the swim, Mann said that for her, swimming distance feels less like a job and more like an adventure. Her swimming experience dates back to when she was 5 years old, when she ignored her parent’s concerns about pool safety and attended her sister’s swim class without permission. Junior Becca Mann became the first swimmer to finish the Triple Maui Nui Channel Swim Aug. 19. Mann, a former USC swimmer who turned pro last August, completed the historic swim in 20 hours and 53 minutes.center_img “[From Molokai to Lanai], I was swimming three times less than my normal speed,” Mann said. “So I was only going 500 meters every 20 minutes, and normally I can do 1.5 kilometers per 20 minutes, so that part was a real challenge. Just knowing that I was still 10 kilometers away [from the end], which I can normally do in two hours but would take me seven hours this time, was really hard to get through.” Since the event was Mann’s first swim at night in open water, she was able to experience the beauty of the nature surrounding her in a new way. The water grew progressively darker as she swam, and Mann was mesmerized by the phosphorescent light that appeared each time she took a stroke. Mann also harbors an interest in fundraising and aims to donate excess funds from each swim to organizations like the Navy Seal Foundation.  The Triple Maui Nui Channel Swim is a daunting 39.64 mile triangular route which begins at Maui and proceeds to Molokai, Lanai and then back to Maui. Although the swim’s distance far exceeds that of Mann’s usual competitive swims, the 10-kilometer open water event and the mile, Mann did not change her training regimen. Mann created a GoFundMe page to raise funds for the paddlers, management and equipment required to ensure her safety during the swim. Although she was unable to raise excess funds this time around, Mann hopes to continue to raise awareness about the organization and its mission to keep the oceans clean through her platform as a professional swimmer. While Mann put in countless hours at the pool to physically prepare for the swim, she was surprised by the mental challenge it presented. The strong current, especially during the second stint from Molokai to Lanai, slowed her down tremendously and made her uncertain as to how much ground she could cover within each hour.last_img read more

Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon Martin’s mom, to campaign for Miami Dade Commission…

first_imgOn Monday, via a YouTube video, Sybrina Fulton the mother of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed Miami teenager who was shot and killed in 2012 as he walked to his father’s house in Sanford, Florida, by George Zimmerman, a white neighborhood volunteer, launched her bid for a seat on the Miami-Dade County Commission. On Saturday May 18 she announced her election bid saying,  “Since 2012, I have advocated tirelessly to empower our communities and make them safer. But the work is not done. I am proud to announce that I will run to represent District 1 on the county commission.”Running against Miami Garden’s mayorThe District 1 seat is currently held by Commissioner Barbara Jordan who because of term limits will relinquish the seat in 2020.  It has been reporting that incumbent Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert will also campaigning for that seat.If elected, Fulton hopes to use her platform to promote gun control through more thorough background checks and limiting private gun sales.In her campaign video she said, “This is an opportunity to continue to turn the tragedy in my family into positive action that helps thousands of other families……I’m a real, everyday Miami-Dade mom, but I’ve also worked my way up in county government,” Fulton said. “I know the need for new leaders focused on narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor. I’m determined to make economic and social change for my community.”Since her son’s murder in 2012, and the subsequent exoneration of Zimmernan by a Florida court, Fulton has become an inspiring spokesperson, along with Trayvon’s father Tracy Martin for parents, especially those who lost children to gun violence, and concerned citizens across the country. The couple also co-authored the book, Rest in Power: The Enduring Life of Trayvon Martin.Role modelThe publicity surrounding Trayvon’s death and the ensuing trial catapulted the country into national debate. Despite the intense struggle of losing a child, Fulton has become a role model to many by turning her grief into advocacy. Remaining strong throughout the trial and ensuing months, she lends her voice to speak against violence towards children and the need to build better, safer communities for all.A Miami native, Fulton graduated from Florida Memorial University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English. She  worked for the Miami-Dade County Housing Development Agency for over 25 years, and is a member of Antioch Missionary Baptist Church of Miami Gardens.Although she has been an ardent advocate against gun violence since her son’s death Fulton has indicated she is not anti-gun. Campaigning for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016, she said, “We need to get to a place where people who own guns are responsible gun owners,” she says. “It’s not about being for or against guns. It’s about everybody being responsible.”Ending gun violence – a key issueShe plans to make ending gun violence a key issue of her election campaign, saying in a recent campaign statement, “Our county must continue moving forward so our families are safe from violence, can afford to live in Miami-Dade, and have access to good paying jobs. I am ready to take on these issues and many others in county government.”Along with ending gun violence she highlighted public safety, affordable housing, and reducing the cost of living as other key issues in her campaign video.last_img read more

The hugely popular Letterkenny Credit Union ‘seasonal loan’ is back

first_imgLetterkenny Credit Union is urging local people to plan and avoid ‘financial indigestion’ during and after the Christmas spending season.With the build up to Christmas already well underway, Letterkenny Credit Union is inviting local people to consider their budgets now and plan ahead to avoid ‘financial indigestion’ this Christmas.Research carried out by the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU) showed that in 2015, a consumer in the Republic of Ireland would take on average eight and a half weeks to financially recover after overspending at Christmas. The 2015 research showed that 9% of people approached or considered approaching a moneylender to borrow for Christmas expenses with nearly half of all consumers expecting to borrow money to get through the Christmas season, borrowing on average €388.In 2015, Irish consumers expected to spend on average €563 on Christmas with middle aged and mature adults likely to spend the most amount of money.Letterkenny Credit Union is urging the public to avoid borrowing beyond their means and to particularly avoid using moneylenders. Knowing your limits in terms of your finances and avoiding unnecessary debt this Christmas is hugely important.Gordon Randles, CEO of Letterkenny Credit Union said: “We are all familiar with that bloated feeling after overdoing it at the Christmas dinner table. We want to ensure our members do not experience ‘financial indigestion’ well into 2018 by helping them to carefully plan their spending this Christmas. Our advice is to begin making Christmas preparations a little bit earlier this year. Setting a Christmas spending budget is more important now than ever, as is writing a list. This will allow people to keep tight control on the Christmas shopping costs.” He added “Using high interest rate sources of credit, such as moneylenders or credit cards, can result in people repaying the costs of Christmas long after the Christmas spirit has worn off. Some carefully planning now, be it via a savings plan or a low cost credit union loan, can help people to cope with the significant costs associated with the festive period, and ensure that they can get quickly get back on track”.For further information please contact Letterkenny Credit Union on (074) 9124166 or email info@letterkennycu.ieThe hugely popular Letterkenny Credit Union ‘seasonal loan’ is back was last modified: September 25th, 2017 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Letterkenny Credit UnionSeasonal Loanlast_img read more