NORTON, Mass. – The Wheaton College men's and women's swimming & diving team joined up with the synchronized swimming team and recently took part in the sixth annual Ted Mullin 'Hour of Power' Relay for Sarcoma Research.
Wheaton joined thousands of athletes from collegiate, high school, and club teams across the nation—as well as student-abroad teams— in the 'Leave it in the Pool' event, which honors those who are fighting or have succumbed to cancer. The event is named for former Carleton College swimmer Edward H. 'Ted' Mullin, who passed away from synovial sarcoma, a rare soft-tissue cancer, in September 2006. The set is one of the Carleton College's favorites, and the team felt it would be an appropriate memorial to Ted to run a 'Leave it in the Pool' practice consisting of continuous relays, any stroke, all-out swimming, for an hour, with the objective of keeping all lanes in each pool on the same length.
"This is something we've participated in every season I've been here," said Wheaton synchronized swimming head coach Rebecca Story. "It's a good way for the synchro team to interact with the swimming team. They did some synchro exercises and we did some speed swimming that we're not very good at, but both teams fundraised for the event and it was a ton of fun."
Funds raised through this event support research at the University of Chicago into the causes and treatment of sarcoma in young people. When the event began in 2006, 15 teams joined together to raise team spirit, sarcoma awareness and $11,000. This year, a total of 105 colleges and Universities took part in the event in hopes of topping the $75,000 raised last year.
"This is a great cause and we were all really excited to be able to do some community service for a great cause," said senior synchronized swimming captain Christina Butera (San Diego, Calif./San Diego Sweetwater Dolphins). "It allows the aquatics department to get together, which doesn't happen very often. All of the divers and swimmers were able to spent time with us. Everyone was really excited – the swimming team did it instead of a normal practice, and they were really into it."
Since the event began five years ago, participants have raised more than $265,000 for the Ted Mullin Fund for Pediatric Sarcoma Research at the Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago where Ted received treatment. The 'Hour of Power' also aims to promote team spirit and to generate awareness of sarcoma, a rare cancer that disproportionately affects adolescents and young adults.
For more information, please visit the Carleton College 'Hour of Power' webpage.