[2010] Simone Butler (Science 7 Olt Mertz, English 8th Gr 2013-2014, Science 8th Gr 2013-2014): Gert

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by gmsteach
Last updated 5 years ago

Health & Fitness

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[2010] Simone Butler (Science 7 Olt Mertz, English 8th Gr 2013-2014, Science 8th Gr 2013-2014): Gert

Early Life

Gertrude Ederle (a.k.a Trudy Ederle) was born on October 23, 1905 in New York City. Gertrude had 5 siblings, and her parents were German immigrants. At a very young age, she knew she was a good swimmer. When she was a teenager, she left school to be a professional swimmer.

Gertrude Ederle“Queen of the Waves”

Major Life Accomplishments

Gertrude coated her body with lanolin when she swam across the English Channel. This was to protect her from jellyfish stings and cold water temperatures.

-In 1926, she was the first woman to swim across the English Channel (21 miles)-She beat the record time for previous males who swam across the English Channel-Her record remained unbroken until 1950-She won a bronze and gold medal at the 1924 Paris Olympics-She held 29 national and world records for swimming

Later in Life

-She starred in a movie about herself and her life, called Swim Girl, Swim-She had been hard of hearing ever since she was a child because of measles, and she went completely deaf in the 1940s-She taught swimming to deaf children-Ederle’s back was injured in 1933, so she was not able to compete after that-The Gertrude Ederle Recreation Center was built in honor of her close to where she grew up-She died on November 30, 2003 in Wyckoff, New Jersey at 98

English Channel Swim

-Her trainer, Jabez Wolffe, had attempted to swim across the Chanel 22 times-Wolffe kept trying to slow her pace, and said that she would never last at that speed-The first time she tried to swim across, Wolffe thought she was drowning, so he told someone to rescue her (but she was just resting). The second time was successful, and she swam 21 miles in 14 hours and 39 minutes


"People said women couldn't swim the Channel, but I proved they could." -Gertrude Ederle

Ederle competed in the 1924 Paris Olympics, and won the bronze in the individual race that she competed in and gold with the US team. She had become America's sweetheart.

A parade held for Ederle on Broadway.


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