Swim­mer pays touch­ing trib­ute to his late fa­ther

Carmarthen Journal - - News - IAN LEWIS 07790 591150 ian.lewis@me­di­awales.co.uk

A SON has made a touch­ing trib­ute to his late fa­ther by swim­ming 24 kilo­me­tres down the River Towy. An­drew Jones, 44, from Llan­gun­nor, Car­marthen, wanted to hon­our his fa­ther, Arthur, who passed away in hospi­tal in Oc­to­ber last year, fol­low­ing a road ac­ci­dent. The 84 year-old was one of the founders of Car­marthen Swim­ming Club and a long term coach. He de­signed the club logo, which is still used to­day. Arthur used to en­joy swim­ming in the River Towy, which An­drew said was “his play­ground back in the day when there were no pools.” Arthur was pre­vi­ously in the mil­i­tary, and served in the air force in Malaysia as an en­gi­neer. Upon re­turn­ing to Car­marthen, he got in­volved in swim­ming. Sadly, Arthur died at the town’s Glang­wili Hospi­tal af­ter last year’s ac­ci­dent. “He had an op­er­a­tion af­ter the crash, but never re­cov­ered”, said An­drew. On the an­niver­sary of his death, An­drew wanted to turn some­thing neg­a­tive into some­thing pos­i­tive so de­cided to swim the 23.7km dis­tance (around 14 miles) be­tween Glang­wili and Llanst­ef­fan in his me­mory, rais­ing funds along the way. An­drew, who works at Swansea’s Mor­ris­ton Hospi­tal, raised money for the Vas­cu­lar So­ci­ety with the swim and is still fundrais­ing. He got in the wa­ter at the River Gwili near the hospi­tal and swam. Af­ter 4km, the Gwili joined the Towy and he made his way down to Car­marthen and on­ward past The Quay to­wards John­stown. Then it was on to the mouth of the river at Llanst­ef­fan, where his dad used to en­joy vis­it­ing and hav­ing pic­nics. He was met there by his mum, Pat, 79. An­drew said: “The whole thing took five hours and four min­utes. “It was a fight to beat the tide, as it turned at 2.30pm, so it was a re­lief to ar­rive at the end just af­ter lunchtime.” He added: “By the time I saw Llanst­ef­fan Cas­tle, I was feel­ing quite deliri­ous. It was just a mat­ter of arm over arm over arm.” An­drew had some friends out on kayaks and a boat to sup­port him dur­ing the swim, feed­ing him soup, en­ergy gels and even a ham roll to keep him go­ing. An­drew ad­mits he is not a nat­u­ral swim­mer, hav­ing played a lot of rugby in his youth but in­jury forced him off the field.

An­drew Jones com­plet­ing a 24km swim of the River Towy from Glang­wili to Llanst­ef­fan in mem­mory of his late fa­ther Arthur, who was one of the found­ing mem­bers of Car­marthen Swim­ming Club.

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