Swim Across America participants take on Lake Michigan waves for cancer research

Liz Nagy Image
Saturday, August 12, 2023
Swimmers take on Lake Michigan waves for cancer research
Swim Across America participants took on Lake Michigan waves for cancer research.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Some Chicago swimmers took on a challenge in the name of a good cause on Saturday.

They have been swimming in Lake Michigan to raise money for cancer research.

"I swam for those who died of cancer, and for those who are diagnosed," said swimmer Stephen Leinenweber.

Saturday's conditions proved to be especially challenging.

Susan Scott was there as part of the City Girls swim team. This year, they were swimming for her daughter, who is expected to wrap months of Hodgkin's lymphoma treatments any day.

"Those waves were out there, and I didn't make it, but I made it halfway, and then back. They had to rescue me, but I'm here," Scott said.

She's more than just there, and just paddling. The City Girls swim team raised more than $11,000 that will go to Rush University cancer patient programs and clinical trials.

"It brings tears to my eyes knowing how anxious my daughter is about this whole journey. It's been a lot," Scott said.

Alyse Mauro Mason is a volunteer with Swim Across America.

"When you hear the words 'You have cancer,' the next thing you want to hear is, 'You have hope.' And, that's what we try to do at Swim Across America: provide more families with hope," Mason said.

With that mission in mind, every stroke against the current or an overzealous wave doesn't seem so tough.

"I thought about all the people I know who have gone through cancer treatment and watch them keep going, so that made it easy," Leinenweber said.

And, the hope is that their swim will make it a little easier for people battling the cruel and uncertain diagnosis of cancer.