Elizabeth Beisel makes history as first woman to successfully swim to Block Island

Elizabeth Beisel has been the darling of Rhode Island since she was 14 when she became the youngest member of the 2008 U.S. Olympic swim team. And she’s been wowing us ever since with three Olympic appearances and two medals.On Saturday, Sept. 25, Beisel, now 29, made history again by becoming the first woman to successfully swim from the mainland to Block Island, taking a 10.4 mile route from Matunuck Beach to Sandy Point at the northernmost tip of the island, in just under five-and-a-half hours.The event was a Swim Across America fundraiser for cancer research, dubbed “Block Cancer.” Beisel’s goal was to raise $100,000 but she quickly met and surpassed that goal with a total donated of over $133,000 by the time the swim took place. Her own father, “Teddy,” passed away from cancer in July.
Beisel’s not the first woman to attempt the swim though. In 1950, islander Rosemary Blane Belknap, the late sister-in-law of Edie Blane, almost made it, and the family lore is that she did. This swim was a race with several participants. But Edie told The Block Island Times that Rosemary never made it to shore, having to get back in the

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