Sandra Bucha: She’s One in a Thousand!

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Sandra Bucha (left) and Alessandro Camapgna at the 2019 ISHOF Ceremony; Photo Courtesy: JM STREINER

Sandra Bucha, ISHOF Board Member, Honoree, Open Water Superstar.  She is One in a Thousand!

When asked why she wanted to join the International Swimming Hall of Fame’s One in A Thousand Club, Sandra Bucha said, “ISHOF signifies the fulfillment of a dream – a dream I never imagined would be realized.  ISHOF preserves the memory of those who have preceded all of us – whose achievements will serve to inspire others in future years.

The history of swimming needs to be preserved.  The accomplishments of our predecessors should always be treasured.  ISHOF does that – and so much more. Our new building will properly reflect its significance for all who come to visit!

Join Nicholas and the One in a Thousand Club by helping ISHOF on a monthly or one-time basis.

ONE IN THOUSAND

For larger corporate sponsorships and estate-planning donations, please contact us at customerservice@ishof.org.

SANDRA BUCHA (USA)

Bucha Sandra

Sandra Bucha. Photo Courtesy: ISHOF

2014 Honor Open Water Swimmer

  • FOR THE RECORD: PROFESSIONAL MARATHON SWIMMING ASSOCIATION WORLD
    RANKING: 1973 (4th place), 1974 (2nd place)
  • CHICAGO LAKE FRONT RACE: First Place
    (1973, 1974, 1975)
  • LA TOQUE 24 HOUR RACE: First Place (1974, 1975)
  • LAC ST. JEAN RACE: First Place (1974, 1975)
  • LAVAL, CANADA RACE: First Place
  • ONE AMERICAN RECORD: 200m freestyle, S.C.M.

Like Annette Kellerman before her, this little girl earned her place in swimming history in the water and in the courtroom.

Sandra Bucha had been a top age-grouper in Washington D.C. before her family moved to Illinois. Swimming under Hall of Fame coach Don Watson, in Hinsdale, she became an American record holder and national champion. She trained with the boy’s high school team, as there were no high school swim teams for girls in the state of Illinois in the 1960’s. Before her senior year, with the support of her coach and parents, she filed suit against the Illinois High School Athletic Association to allow her to compete as a member of the boys team.  This was before the passage of the Title IX amendment to the civil rights act. Unfortunately, she lost the suit. But it was a sign of things to come.

She decided to retire from swimming at 18 when she did not make the 1972 Olympic team.  She attended Stanford University, which, like Hinsdale, did not have a women’s swimming team.

Returning home in the summer of 1973, Sandra saw an ad for a 10-mile swim in Lake Michigan with a prize purse of $5,000 for the winner and cash awards for second and third. She had never swum 10 miles straight before, but Sandra thought this was good time to try. She trained only a couple of weeks and broke the race record. It was there, at the Lake Michigan swim, where she first discovered there was a professional circuit in Canada for open water swims.

Sandra Bucha competed in nine marathon swims between 1973 and 1975 and finished first in every race. Only once did she come in third to a male and every other swim, she finished a close second to the first male swimmer. For the two La Toque 24-hour swims, she teamed up with her high school teammate and Hall of Fame Swimmer, John Kinsella, to set a record of 190 laps around the lake, winning the race twice. She won two Lac St. Jean Races (26 miles) and two Laval Canada Swims (10 miles) and three Lake Michigan Swims (10 miles). Most of her swims were race records with only three males finishing ahead in her nine races. She retired in 1975 to pursue a career in law.

Her accomplishments in the water helped pave the way for thousands of girls and women to participate in sports.  Her accomplishments in the water helped pave the way for the acceptance of women in the male dominated sport of marathon swimming and for marathon swimming to become an Olympic sport.

Sandra Bucha was ahead of her time in so many ways.  And now, she is “One in A Thousand.”  Won’t you join her?

ONE IN THOUSAND

The International Swimming Hall of Fame wants to know if you are one in a thousand?  We think you are!  Show how special you are and become a member of the International Swimming Hall of Fame’s “One In A Thousand” Club.  Help keep the International Swimming Hall of Fame moving forward toward a new vision and museum by joining now!

During these unprecedented times, the ISHOF Board is calling on every member in the aquatic community to make a small monthly commitment of support to show how special you are and how special the International Swimming Hall of Fame is to everyone.

Our goal is simple. If we get 1,000 people to simply commit $10, $25 or $50 per month, we will generate enough revenue to go beyond this Covid-19 Pandemic Crisis.” – Bill Kent – Chairman of the ISHOF Board

Those that believe in our vision, mission, and goals can join us in taking ISHOF into the future and be a part of aquatic history.”  – Brent Rutemiller – CEO and President of ISHOF

Since 1965, ISHOF has been the global focal point for recording and sharing the history of aquatics, promoting swimming as an essential life-skill, and developing educational programs and events related to water sports. ISHOF’s vision for the future is to build a new museum and expand its reach by offering its museum artifacts digitally through a redesigned website.

The ISHOF Board of Directors is calling on all members of the aquatics community to make a small monthly commitment to show their dedication to aquatics and how special the International Swimming Hall of Fame is to everyone.

About ISHOF   

Take a Virtual Tour

The International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) museum opened its doors to the public in December of 1968 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. That same year, the Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA) – the governing body for Olympic aquatic sports – designated the ISHOF museum as the “Official Repository for Aquatic History”.   In 2018, Sports Publications Inc, publisher of Swimming World Magazine and its multi-media platforms, merged with ISHOF to expand the museum’s reach and impact.  Today, ISHOF’s vision is to be the global focal point for recording and sharing the history of aquatics, promoting swimming as an essential life-skill, and developing educational programs and events related to water sports.  Show your support for the sport of swimming by becoming a member of ISHOF.

ISHOF Vision Statement
To be the global focal point for recording and sharing the history of aquatics, promoting swimming as an essential life-skill, and developing educational programs and events related to water sports.

ISHOF Mission Statement
To collaborate with aquatic organizations worldwide to preserve, educate and celebrate history, showcase events, share cultures, and increase participation in aquatic sports.

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Architectural rendition of Hall of Fame Aquatic Center that is currently under renovation.

The International Swimming Hall of Fame, Inc. is registered as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, incorporated in the State of Florida. Contributions to ISHOF are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. ISHOF’s tax identification number is 59-1087179. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE (800-435-7352) WITHIN THE STATE OR FROM THE WEBSITE, www.800helpfla.com. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE. You can find out more about us on guidestar.org under International Swimming Hall of Fame, Inc.

For more information please contact:
Brandi West, Marketing Director
brandiw@swimmingworld.com
954-462-6536

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