Indiana Swimmers Donate Their Medals to Children Battling Life-Threatening Illnesses

As a swimmer, you find yourself in a tough race after a long season of hard work. At the end of the season, you are rewarded for your dedication and perseverance with a medal. There are thousands of children also in tough races, but their races are not in the pool. These children are fighting very serious illnesses, and they also deserve a medal for their dedication and perseverance.

The Indiana Swimming LSC has shown their support to Medals 4 Mettle. The non-profit organization, Medals 4 Mettle, accepts medals from athletes and gives them to patients with very serious illnesses. Typically, the organization only accepts medals from marathon runners and triathletes, but in the spirit of philanthropy, they are accepting any medals from children who wish to donate and help other sick children. Indiana Swimming is accepting medals at the Indiana Senior State Championships and the Indiana Age Group State Championships and will be donating them to the M4M organization.

Becky Flaherty, a high school swimmer from the Carmel Swim Club in Carmel, Indiana, is responsible for bringing the idea to Indiana Swimming. She is the leader of the “Indiana Swimming for M4M” project.

met•tle

/ˈmetl/

Noun
A person’s ability to cope well with difficulties or to face a demanding situation in a spirited and resilient way.
Synonyms
Spirit – Nature – Temper – Temperament – Character

 

From the Medals for Mettle website: 

The day after he finished the 2003 Chicago Marathon, Steven Isenberg, M.D., a head and neck surgeon in Indianapolis, paid a visit to a colleague who was hospitalized. The two men were a study in contrasts. Dr. Isenberg, 53, was on a postrace high. Les Taylor, who had prostate cancer, lay flat on his back with tubes running in and out of him.

At a loss for words, Dr. Isenberg pulled his finishers’ medal from his pocket and placed it around Taylor’s neck. “I want you to have this,” he said. “You are running a much more difficult marathon than the one I completed.”

Before he died, Taylor told Dr. Isenberg how much he treasured the medal. Those words inspired Dr. Isenberg to start Medals4Mettle in 2005, as a vehicle to collect runner’s medals which could be donated to those who are battling serious and debilitating illnesses and who have demonstrated similar courage and mettle in fighting those illnesses.

Certainly everyone cannot run a marathon, but people who are battling life-threatening illnesses and severe disabilities demonstrate mettle everyday. Marathon runners experience the cheers of support from total strangers as they run through the streets, and these same runners cheer the wheelchair competitors that they may pass on the course. Medals4Mettle celebrates our collective human courage, and our innate desire to reward and support each other as we all face life’s challenges.

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About Tony Carroll

Tony Carroll

The writer formerly known as "Troy Gennaro", better known as Tony Carroll, has been working with SwimSwam since April of 2013. Tony grew up in northern Indiana and started swimming in 2003 when his dad forced him to join the local swim team. Reluctantly, he joined on the condition that …

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