Olympian, double amputee swim to raise money for cancer research

June 11, 2017 GMT

A wide variety of people, including a wounded veteran and Olympic medalist, made a stop at the Triangle Aquatic Center on Sunday to raise money for cancer research.

An Olympian, a wounded warrior, children and adults, some who knew Dr. Brian Goldman and others who didn’t, all swam in honor of him, the life he lead and the lives he touched.

“Dr. Brian Goldman and I used to swim on the same team for every event and, in fact, at one point we were swimming in the same lane and had cancer at the same time and didn’t realize it,” said event organizer Mary DeMillia. “I feel very passionately to continue to fight, to find a cure.”

The Meredith Townes Mudpuppies hosted the event as part of a nationwide effort to raise money for cancer research. Goldman, the one-time coach of the Mudpuppies, died two years ago as a result of colon cancer.

Local Olympian Ryan Held didn’t know Goldman, but was all in when he found out about the cause.

“I’ve had alumni who swam for N.C. State and friends and coaches who are very close with me say he was a great man,” Held said.

Timothy Payne, an Invictus Games medalist, combat veteran and double amputee, swam at the event as well.

“Bad things happen all the time and I want to help people with lessons that I’ve learned through traumatic injury,” he said.

The support is something that brings comfort to Goldman’s friends.

“To be honest, I’m somewhat overwhelmed. I didn’t know it would turn out like this. It’s just a fantastic thing,” said friend Henry Cantrell.

The goal was to raise $10,000 for cancer research. Organizers said, when all is said and done, they hope to surpass that number.