CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A College of Charleston professor is gearing up for a big challenge: swimming the 19 nautical miles across the English Channel, in very cold temperatures.
Education Professor Brian Lanahan is heading to Ireland in early July to train for the swim which will take place Aug. 14-18.
"I have always been captivated by the thought of swimming the Channel," says Lanahan, an associate professor of citizenship education. "I've participated in athletics and made healthy decisions, but in 2010 I had a series of illnesses and made a commitment to getting healthy again through this challenge. I have been preparing for this for a few years and now I'm very excited about the prospect of actually getting in the water and attempting the swim."
The swim could take Lanahan anywhere from ten to sixteen hours, during which time he'll be in water with temperatures ranging from 59°F to 63°F. He has been training the last two years with English Channel soloist Kathleen Wilson and fellow marathon swimmer Lesley Fanning.
As part of his Channel swim, Lanahan hopes to raise $10,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of America.
"I am raising funds to honor the memory of my mother Mary Ellen Lanahan who died of lymphoma in 2006. I was very close to her and served as a caregiver for the last six months of her life, so this effort is especially meaningful to me," Lanahan explains.
After the swim, Lanahan will head to Sarajevo, Bosnia to begin his time as a Woodrow Wilson International Center Scholar.