[PacMasterUpdate] Pacific Masters Update October 13, 2005

pacmasterupdate at PacificMasters.org Fri Oct 14 01:11:24 EDT 2005

After suffering a stroke two months ago, Marjorie
Sharpe passed away yesterday. She was 88.
Marjorie was known for her love of life. She
always had a smile on her face and a gleam in her
eye. At the time of her death, Marjorie held six
national records in the backstroke.

At the end of the Update, there are remembrances of Marjorie.

Starting Sepetember 19th Backstrokers could start
with their toes out of the water (but not curled
over the gutter).

The Breaststoker can now do a dolphin kick off
the wall. I would not try it now, as everything
has not been sorted out. So there is a chance you
could do it leagally and get dq'ed or do it wrong
and get away with it. As USA Swimming and US
Masters figure it out, information will be in the

Wine Country Invitational
Santa Rosa Masters will be holding the Wine
Country Invitational in Healdsburg, October 14
and 15 . You can enter on race day.

DAVIS AQUATIC MASTERS will host stroke clinics
for fitness swimmers from 1-2:30 pm on the
following dates at the Civic pool in Davis just
off the corner of 5th and B St.

Clinics are $10 each, pre-paid, for non-DAM
members. Coach Rick Powers has given more than
100 clinics in 30 countries. DAM staff and
swimmers will assist you in the water with your
technique. Butterfly Sat. Oct. 15; Breaststroke
Oct. 16.

Contact Rick Powers at rpswimmer at hotmail.com

The Tuolomne County Short Course Meet on October
29th has been cancelled. All meet entry fees will
be refunded.

There was a problem with the Heather Farms pool
schedule. The 2005 Pacific Masters Short Course
Meters Championships have been moved to November
4th, 5th and 6th. This meet is the first meet
where the distance events will be held on the
last day.

Bay Masters (BAY) is in need of an Assistant
Masters Coach to run the evening practices at the
newly opened UCSF Bakar Fitness Center (at
Mission Bay). The facility has an outdoor 6 lane
x 25 yard pool on the roof overlooking the bay.
Interested candidates should contact Annette
Wheeler, Aquatics Manager at:
http://awheeler@cls.ucsf.edu or phone:
(415) 502-4446.

Toulomne County Aquatic Masters (TCAM)
regretfully decided to cancel their pool meet
scheduled for Saturday, October 29, 2005. Pacific
Masters would like feedback from you to assist in
future meet planning.

1. How far would you travel to a meet?
2. Would you rather attend a one-day meet on Saturday or Sunday?
3. Do you prefer to attend multiple day meets
(3-day championship meets) or one-day meets?
4. Are there certain times during the year you
prefer to attend a meet (for example, you only go
to meets during summer months)
5. Any other comments on the timing or location of Pacific Masters pool meets?

Please send any responses to MAILTO:barryfasbender at comcast.net

Opportunity Knocks
- Swim for Malaria!
Pacific Masters Swimming encourages you to
support the World Swim for Malaria, a global
grassroots swimming initiative partnering with
PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Speedo, and Microsoft
that can be swum on or before December 3rd. The
goal is to have a million people participate in
this event. 100% of all monies raised will go
toward the purchase and installation of mosquito
netting - the single most effective way of
preventing malaria.

Though we don't experience malaria first hand
here in the US, at least a million people die
from malaria each year. Some put the estimates as
high as 2.7 million. 70% of the deaths are of
children under 5. You can find all the
information you need at
http://www.worldswimformalaria including
sponsorship forms, how to collect and submit
donations, the background and goals of this
event, and the pledges of participation of
individuals, groups, Masters teams, and corporate
organizations around the world.

You can swim this event at Stanford Swimming pool
this event on December 3rd or you can organize
this event at your own pool. Pacific Masters
encourages you and your friends and teammates to
join in this effort to make a real difference in
the world.

Have a good week



Tim Edmonds, Coach of Stanford Masters

It is with a sad heart that I write to tell you
that Marjorie Sharpe passed away yesterday
morning. Marjorie suffered a stroke about two
months ago and was able to have some nice moments
with friends following the stroke. Her last days
were quiet and peaceful.

Marjorie was, without doubt, one of the most
vibrant and wonderful individuals whom it has
ever been my pleasure to know. She had two great
loves in her life, her husband Al, who passed
away nearly 9 years ago, and the water. On too
many mornings to count you could find Marjorie
seeking the perfect backstroke, the perfect flip
turn, or the elusive perfect freestyle in her
lane. Always there to share a tidbit of advice
with a new swimmer or share a story about her
travels with Al she was a wonderful ambassador
of Swimming and a true reminder of what it can
mean to have a long very full life. Swimming
well into her 88th year kept her young and gave
her a fulfillment that she could never quite put
into the right words. She would never argue about
being called a "kept woman", constantly seeking
the warm embrace and the support of the
chlorinated water of the Stanford pools.

You will be missed my "sweetheart"......our pools
will be a little less full without you in them.

A memorial service will be planned in the near
future and I'll send out details when they are
available. Please feel free to email me or use
the Masters Misc. list to share memories or
stories about Marjorie. I would love to hear
them....more now than ever. Warmly....Tim

Whenever the alarm goes off at 4:50am on a
winter morning, and the rain is pounding my roof,
I always ponder the thought of skipping morning
Masters swimming. Then, without exception, I
would think about Marjorie, walking so
tentatively down the pool stairs with both
crutches, saying hello to everyone, and absorbing
the rain as if it were a petty nuisance.

She has always been my inspiration for putting up
with the little annoyance of swim practice. She
would muscle through anything in life, and make
tons of friends along the way. My understanding
is that at Ocean competition swims, someone just
carries Marjorie out beyond the waves and tosses
her in for the start of another great swim.

She was an angel, and God is probably thrilled to
have her swimming on the Master's Team up top.

Brian Avery


One of my fondest memories of Marjorie was early
in the fall of my freshman year at Stanford. It
was 6:50 in the morning and because Marjorie was
also an "honorary member" of the varsity team,
she often shared our locker room. We were all
getting changed after cycling, and I remember
being shocked that she had already been in the
water for an hour and a half (here I was thinking
we were the tough ones!). She was tying her Keds
over her swimming socks, and during our
conversation I asked her how swimming was going.
She lit up and said she was so excited because it
was her birthday and she was "aging up" and was
ready to break all the world records for the 85+
group. We laughed and I wished her luck, and sure
enough, the next week she reported back that she
had done just that. Every day Marjorie amazed me
with her smiles and motivation. That tiny body
housed one of the biggest hearts I have ever

Tinley Bick

Majorie was a regular entrant at open water
events all over northern California. I saw her
time and time again, usually with Al when he was
alive. I'll always remember the Whiskeytown Lake
swim one year, which offered both the 1-mile and
3-mile events. Whiskeytown is up by Redding, and
Majorie wasn't about to waste a four hour drive
each way by entering only one event, so she swam

She could barely walk on land, but was she a
terror in the water! Quite an inspiration, and
always ready with a smile and a compliment!

Jim Merchant

I knew right away the first time I met Marjorie
that she was a very special and inspirational
person. That was nearly a decade ago -- it was
after workout in the women’s locker room at
Stanford. Marjorie was dripping wet, smiling and
making some sort of comment about her time for a
swimming event. Being impressed that this older
lady was still competing, let alone swimming
masters workouts at Stanford, I asked her when
she started competitive swimming, assuming she
had been competing most of her life. “Oh no!” she
said, “I only started competing in my 70s. That
made a huge impression on me. Now I think of
Marjorie every time I think I’m too old to take
on something physically challenging or new. I
thought of her when I finally decided to learn
how to do flip turns in my late 40s I sucked so
much water up my nose those first few months, but
stuck to it and succeeded knowing there are
people like Marjorie in the world.

Another incident I’ll never forgot and speaks to
the strength, humor and joy of life that Marjorie
had. It was at PMS Short Course Yards
Championships in Santa Cruz a couple of years
ago. Marjorie had slipped off the blocks during
her dive on an early event and scraped the skin
off one of her shins. That didn’t stop her from
swimming her other events that day. One of the
meet officials had taped-up her wound and she
proceeded to swim her next event. Apparently the
tape started to unwind during her swim and by the
end she was dragging a long tail of bandage
through the water. She finished her swim fine,
but was having a hard time untangling the mess
and getting herself out of the lane, so I helped
her out. I was amazed when I saw the bandage and
bleeding wound she was swimming with, but she
told me what happened, just shook her head and
said chuckling “That if you live long enough
everything is bound to happen to you!”

What a wonderful lady! I will miss seeing her at
meets and will think of her often.
-Lisa Ryner

I first met Marjorie when I first started
swimming Masters in the early 90's with the
Peninsula Covenant Community Center Masters. Back
then Marjorie was using a walker. But, as time
went by she gave up the walker and started using
a cane. It was as if the more she swam the
younger she became. It has been a privilege to
swim Masters with Marjorie. I don't know anyone
else who managed to break so many Masters records
as she was able to do. She knew all of her
competition by name. And she knew what she had to
do to win. She just kept showing up and winning.
Here's one for a wonderful person and a great
Masters swimmer.

Ken Merritt
Michael W. Moore