Noted Canadian (BC) marathon swimmer Ann Meraw passed away at age 100:
In 2008, Meraw earned the Order of B.C. in recognition of her accomplishments as a distance swimmer, lifeguard and swim coach.
In 1985, she was inducted into the B.C. Sports Hall of Fame, as a builder.
Meraw first rose to prominence as a long-distance swimmer. She swam 16.1 kilometres across Howe Sound and back in 1927, then across Burrard Inlet at age 13, from Vancouver to Bowen Island.
She then swam 83 km in 16 hours and 14 minutes, non-stop, using a six-beat crawl at sixty strokes per minute, on Okanagan Lake.
In 1958, she swam 142 km in the same lake, from Kelowna to Penticton, in 32 hours, 12 minutes, a feat that has never been matched, according to the hall of fame.
Meraw held seven world records in marathon swimming, four of which still stand.
Her vision, said her grandson, was to swim as far as her eyes could see.
“For her, it was about being the best that she could be, to push limits, in some cases ones that no human has ever duplicated.”
Meraw became Canada’s first female registered lifeguard in 1943, and the only woman coach ever in the World Professional Federation of Swimming.
Presumably the distances are a bit off for a couple of those (83 km in 16 hours?), and also interesting that Okanagan was the site of other recent self-proclaimed "world-record" attempts ... but clearly this was a remarkable and pioneering swimmer. RIP!
Entry in B.C. Sports Hall of Fame: