Nyad Quits Epic Swim Attempt

Another man 'o war sting could prove fatal, docs warn
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 25, 2011 11:16 AM CDT

(Newser) – Endurance athlete Diana Nyad has decided to end her swimming ultramarathon from Cuba to Florida about halfway through, as her face and body grew swollen from painful man o' war stings. Medics warned another sting could be life-threatening. Nyad team member Vanessa Linsley said the swimmer was disappointed and emotional. "She's pissed. Nobody blames her. There isn't anything that can change this ... there's nothing that has to do with your swimming capabilities. You can't control mother nature," Linsley said.

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The 62-year-old swimmer has completed at least 49 miles of the 103-mile passage of the treacherous Florida Straits. She soldiered through the stings, at one point cutting eye and mouth holes through a swim cap she wore over her face to prevent future stings. But around 11:30am, medics warned toxins from the stings were building up and another sting could be serious, Linsley said. Linsley said Nyad was about to get out of the water and was surrounded by her support team. Nyad tried last month, but had to quit after a serious asthma attack made it difficult to breathe. Nyad's website is here. (Read more Diana Nyad stories.)

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