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Fayette Poenisch

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Fidel Castro celebrating the Swim for Peace by Walter Poenisch in 1978 together with Fay Poenisch
Fayette Poenisch and Walter Poenisch

Fayette Poenisch is the wife of Walter Poenisch who swam from Cuba to Florida in 1978. She was assisted by Captain Bendt Lynge, J. Marvin Mims, the President of the International Federation of Professional Ocean Swimmers and Divers who was the observer and authenticator, and Glenn Drummond. She is a Patron of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame.

Walter Poenisch[edit]

Walter Poenisch (1913 - 2000) was a former American open water swimmer who completed swim in Michigan, Ohio, and Florida and set three world records. He was called the World's Strongest Endurance Swimmer as he towed a 30-ton paddlewheel boat while swimming with his hands and feet shackled. He also completed a swim from Cuba to The Little Duck Key in Florida at the age of 68 on 11 July 1978. His solo swim covered 128.8 miles in 34 hours 15 minutes.

International Federation of Ocean Swimmers and Divers[edit]

Walter Poenisch followed the rules of the International Federation of Ocean Swimmers and Divers on his 1978 swim across the Straits of Florida:

  • Fins are allowed
  • Snorkel is allowed
  • Shark cage is allowed
  • Getting out of the water four times for no longer than five minutes at a time to administer emergency medicine, receive critical nourishment, or for any reason that directly threatened the life of the swimmer

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