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Swimmers made record-breaking splash

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Thirty Galax swimmers have been honored as record holders for their collaboration with more than 35,000 swimmers across the globe in an attempt at breaking the record for the world’s largest swim lesson on June 18, 2013.

“We had bad weather that day, but we had a great turn-out,” said Galax Recreation Center aquatics coordinator Trace Lumpkin.
Beginning at 11 a.m. that day, Lumpkin’s class was led into the water for a swimming lesson at the same time as other participating instructors in more than 700 locations around the world.
The class was made up of students ranging from four to 17 years old.
According to a press release from the event’s website last June, event organizers projected more than 35,000 participants for the 2013 life-saving swim lesson; which was more than a 40 percent increase over the last year’s world record of 24,873.
Lumpkin explained that the event was put together to inform the public why swim lessons are important for children. According to the event’s website, drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death in children ages one to 14. Further research revealed that children who don’t learn to swim before third grade will likely not learn at all.
Lumpkin added that his individual class was only a few short of the single site record for that day. “That was something that I didn’t really think about us doing,” he said.
He noted that the classes are trying new programs, and would be open to participating in similar events like this in the future. “It was really a cool thing, and I think everyone enjoyed being a part of it.”