Marathon Swimmer Vicki Keith Inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame

Swimmer Vicki Keith is 1 of 8 Canadians that will be inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame as part of its class of 2019. The class, announced in Calgary on Thursday, will be officially enshrined during an induction ceremony that will be held in October in Toronto. The group will bring the total number of athletes and builders inducted to 672 in the hall’s 64-year history.

Author’s note: no relation.

Keith had broken over a dozen World Records in marathon open water swimming. Among her achievements were becoming the first swimmer to cross all five Great Lakes, which she accomplished in just a 2-month period; the first double crossing of Lake Ontario; and the first swimmer to swim across the English Channel butterfly.

During her career she also broke records for the longest solo swim by distance (94km) and time (63 hours, 40 minutes) in Lake Ontario. She achieved this in 2005, 4 years after officially retiring from these massive marathon swimming, at 34-years old. No swimmer has crossed Lake Ontario more times than her 6 swims.

She is already a member of the Terry Fox Hall of Fame and the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame.

In 1990, she also swam 43 miles in a pool in 24 hours, and in 1986 continuously swam in a pool for 129 hours, 45 minutes: over 5 days.

Other Members of the Class of 2019:

  • Colette Bourgonje – Paralympic Nordic skiier and wheelchair racer (won medals at both Summer and Winter Paralympic Games)
  • Martin Brodeur – NHL Hall of Fame hockey player (3-time Stanley Cup winner, 2-time Olympic gold medalist)
  • Jayna Hefford – Canadian women’s ice hockey player (4-time Olympic gold medalist, 1-time Olympic silver medalist, 2nd-leading scorer in Canadian women’s national team hockey history)
  • Waneek Horn-Miller – water polo player (1999 Pan American Games gold medalist, first Mohawk woman to represent Canada at the Olympics, 2001 World Championship bronze medalist)
  • Guylaine Bernier – builder/rowing (1976 Olympian, member of FISA Arbitration Commission, international rowing judge)
  • Doug Mitchell – builder/multiple sports (Commissioner of the Canadian Football League, member of CFL Board of Governors)

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3 years ago

Love the fact that Vicki Keith is being honoured – to the person who posted this, are you aware that the ‘tag’ is water polo?? Vicki Keith is a marathon swimmer, not a water polo layer.

3 years ago

Congratulations Vicki, I remember the countless hours you trained at U of G with Al Fairweather, while I was coaching the Marlins in the 80’s and 90’s. Don’t know how you swim that far and that long, a well deserved award.

3 years ago

Um 129 hours in 5 days. Chief there is 120 hours in 5 days.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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