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Sunday, March 29, 2015

David Yudovin, Ocean Pioneer Extraordinaire, Passes Away

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Dale Petranech reported that International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer David Yudovin unexpectedly passed away from a heart attack.

As a major benefactor of the sport, a quiet inspirational icon among channel swimmers, and the head and visionary of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame, Yudovin will missed by many around the world. "He is unreplaceable," writes Petranech. "But as a tribute to David, the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame board of directors will keep as many of his plans for the IMSHOF in place."

English Channel and Catalina Channel record holder Penny Dean recalls her fellow Hall of Fame dual inductee, "The open water swimming community just lost the man with the most gentle heart and soul who had just committed himself and his wife Beth to improve the recognition of marathon swimming and its athletes and organizations worldwide, especially the Hall of Fame."

Scott Zornig who worked with Yudovin at the Santa Barbara Channel Swimming Association, said, "Dave was not only one of the greatest marathon swimmers ever who quietly conquered over 40 channels, but he was a coach, mentor and friend. Dave's heart was even bigger than his swims as he continually gave of himself to the sick and less fortunate. I will never forget his kindness nor his love of our sport. Dave showed us that speed is irrelevant. Rather, it is far more important to overcome obstacles and complete the journey."

Yudovin was one of the most prolific ocean marathon swimmers in history, known for pioneering dozens of channel swimming firsts that literally span the globe. A successful entrepreneur in the seafood industry in California, Yudovin began channel swimming in 1976 and remained extraordinarily active in the sport for nearly 40 years.

From lending his experience and expertise to the Catalina Channel Swimming Federation and Santa Barbara Channel Swimming Association to giving motivational speeches to various groups, he opened the eyes of many locally, regionally and internationally with his open water swimming exploits, but also because of his humble and passionate nature.

Over the course of his career, Yudovin completed over 35 solo marathon channel swims that include over 15 unprecedented swims. "He was the first to cross the Tsugaru Channel in northern Japan on July 7th, a day with a special meaning in Japan," says Steven Munatones who wrote many articles about his exploits. "That is who David was - someone special, very special. Every time, David sent the Daily News of Open Water Swimming an email, it always contained a pleasant surprise. He was somewhere in the world, far away from home either planning or completing an unprecedented swim, usually in very tough conditions. He was a pioneer extraordinaire." Together with his wife Beth, Yudovin raised funds for the City of Hope Cancer Center, Senior Nutrition, Cambria Community Bus, and North Coast Ocean Rescue, Cambria Fire Department and was right in the middle of

His marathon and channel swims included the following:

*1976 - Catalina Channel (20.2 miles) 11 hours 51 minutes
*1982 - Anacapa Island Channel (11nm) 8 hours 27 minutes
*1983 - Santa Cruz Island Channel (16 nm) 15 hours 15 minutes - 1st
*1984 - North Coronado Island to Mexico (11 nm) 6 hours 22 minutes - 1st
*1985 - Morocco to Gibraltar (11 nm) 9 hours 27 minutes
*1986 - California Channel (20.2 miles) 13 hours 45 minutes
*1990 - Tsugaru Channel (Honchu-Hokkaido) (17 nm) 11 hours 54 minutes - 1st
*1991 - South Coronado Island to Mexico (8.5 nm) 4 hours 6 minutes
*1991 - North Coronado Island to Mexico (11 nm) 7 hours 45 minutes - 1st
*1992 - South Coronado Island to Mexico (8.5 nm) 4 hours 20 minutes
*1992 - South Coronado Island to Mexico (8.5 nm) 4 hours 25 minutes
*1993 - South Coronado Island to Mexico (8.5 nm) 4 hours 15 minutes
*1993 - Catalina Channel (20.2 miles) 11 hours 49 minutes
*1995 - Catalina Channel (20.2 miles) 10 hours 46 minutes
*1996 - English Channel (18 nm) 13 hours 37 minutes
*1996 - Bali to Java (6 nm) 1 hours 36 minutes - 1st
1997 - Nusa Penida to Bali (9 nm) 2 hours 48 minutes - 1st
2000 - Indonesia's Sunda Strait, Java to Sumatra (15 nm) 10 hours 34 minutes - 1st
2002 - Maui Channel (Lanai-Maui) (10 nm) 4 hours 47 minutes
2002 - Molokini to Maui (5 nm) 2 hours 6 minutes
2003 - Molokini to Maui (5 nm) 2 hours 16 minutes
2003 - Maui to Molokai (10 nm) 4 hours 14 minutes
2003 - Maui to Kahoolawe (8 nm) 4 hours 18 minutes
2003 - Molokai to Lanai (10 nm) 5 hours 11 minutes
2003 - Cape Wiwiki to Cape Brett, Bay of Islands, New Zealand (10 nm) 5 hours 23 minutes - 1st
2004 - Cook Strait (North Island-South Island) (16 nm) 9 hours 38 minutes
2008 - Moorea Channel, French Polynesia from Tahiti Island to Moorea Island (10 nm) 6 hours 20 minutes
2008 - Faial Pico Channel, Azores from Faial Island to Pico Island, Portugal (5 nm) 2 hours 20 minutes - 1st
2008 - Pico S. Jorge Channel, Azores from Pico Island to S. Jorge Island, Portugal (10 nm) 7 hours 26 minutes - 1st
2008 - Corvo Floress Channel, Azores from Corvo Island to Flores Island, Portugal (10 nm) 7 hours 10 minutes - 1st
2010 - Ihla Madeira Ihla Desertas Grande Channel, Madeira Islands from Ihla Madeira to Ihla Desertas Grande, Portugal (11 nm) 7 hours 3 minutes - 1st
2011 - Sipika Island to Simaleko Island, North Sumatra, Indonesia (8 nm) 3 hours 59 minutes - 1st
2011 - Telo Island to Sigata Island, North Sumatra, Indonesia (5 nm) 3 hours 36 minutes - 1st
2011 - Tanah Masa Island to Pini Island. North Sumatra, Indonesia (11.5 nm) 7 hours 52 minutes - 1st
2012 - Santo Antonio Island to San Vincente Island, Cape Verde, Africa (10.5 nm) 5 hours 44 minutes - 1st
2012 - Fogo Island to Brava Island, Cape Verde, Africa (12.6 nm) 6 hours 38 minutes - 1st
2013 - Maio Island to Santiago Island, Cape Verde, Africa (16 nm) 11 hours 37 minutes - 1st
2013 - Simeleko Island to Tanahmasa Island, Baluta Beach, North Sumatra, Indonesia (4.85 nm) 3 hours 34 minutes - 1st
2013 - Tanahmasa Island, Rangas Beach to Simeleko Island, North Sumatra, Indonesia (5.5 nm) 3 hours 33 minutes - 1st
2013 - Telo Island to Sigata Island, North Sumatra, Indonesia (5.5 nm) 3 hours 40 minutes - 1st
2013 - Pini Island to Laga Island, North Sumatra, Indonesia (7.5 nm) 5 hours 46 minutes - 1st
2014 - Principe Island/Around Gale Rock Island/Principe Island Sao Tome, Africa (6 nm) 3 hours 55 minutes - 1st
2014 - Isla Tinhosa Pequena/Principe Island, Sao Tome, Africa (5 nm) 6 hours 11 minutes

Among his legacies will be the Yudovin Award awarded by the Marathon Swimmers Federation as part of its MSF Global Marathon Swimming Awards. The Yudovin Award honors the single most adventurous swim of the year as voted upon by the MSF membership and is meant to recognize the spirit of adventure, the most interesting swim, or the most unusual swim - as was Yudovin's speciality.

The Daily News of Open Water Swimming covered Yudovin's exploits with the following articles:

* David Yudovin Goes 3 For 3 In Cape Verde
* David Yudovin, Swimming Between Wild And Fire in Africa
* Marathon Swimming Along The Equator
* Swimming Strait - Tackling The Tsugaru
* International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Class of 2013
* Tackling The Tsugaru
* David Yudovin Crosses Canal de São Vicente
* David Yudovin Becomes Namesake For MSF Award
* David Yudovin Inspires The Yudovin Award
* The Perfect Male Open Water Swimmer
* Dreamers Are Driven
* Water Transforms David Yudovin
* Successful Swimming Strategies In The Far East
* The Ties That Bind In The Open Water
* Swimming In The World's Greatest Wind Tunnel
* WOWSA, IMSHOF Heads To Cork, Ireland
* What Makes Great Swimmers?
* David Yudovin Voted In International Swimming Hall Of Fame
* International Swimming Hall Of Fame Open Water Greats
* Bali To Java, An American Favorite
* Yudovin Concludes 6-Year Journey In São Tomé, Príncipe
* 9 Accomplish Canal Faial Pico Crossing
* Crème de la Crème Of The Open Water World
* Go West To Swim North
* 9 Succeed In Nadar Açores Project Between Pico And Faial
* California Channel Island Swimming History 1926 to 1978
* Antecedent Attempts At Anacapa
* Negative Splitting Life In The Open Water
* So What Do You Do?
* 5,000 Reasons To Give Hope
* Open Water Swimming Heroes

For more information, visit his website here at davidyudovinchannelswimmer.com. For information on his memory paddle out on April 3rd, visit here.

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