Madison's 2005 All–City Swim Meet feels familiar to Bonnie Glover. "The energy's still there, the excitement, the fun of sport—it's all still here—so it's really great," she says.
Bonnie's sister, Shelley, competed in the annual event for several years prior to the 17- year–old's death in 2004 following a training session accident with the US ski team.
"She was a very inspirational sister; I really looked up to her even for being two years younger."
Today, the effort to enhance Shelley's legacy continues with the sale of a bracelet which bears both her name and motto: Explore, Dream, Discover. "She really just took life by the horns and really just jumped in and she was always moving and just looking for challenges and so we're kind of just trying to make that live on," continues Bonnie.
"We'd like to make sure that every child in Madison has access to sporting activities at the Goodman community swimming pool—just like Shelley did," says Jodi Bender Sweeney, of the Foundation for Madison's Public Schools.
Proceeds from the bracelet sales are funneled into a 500–thousand dollar endowment, through the Foundation for Madison's Public Schools. The endowment will, in turn, fund swimming lessons, lifeguard training, and the development of a swim team at Goodman Pool, when it is completed.
Bender Sweeney says local swim coaches hope it helps tap into a larger talent pool.
"They have a hard time getting kids from financially–disadvantaged neighborhoods—kids of color—on swim teams, because they haven't been exposed to that swimming as little kids," she explains.
The Shelley Glover Memorial Fund which currently totals just over $75,000 will offer the $5 bracelets at Middleton's Walter Bauman Aquatic Center through the end of the All City Meet Sunday.
You can also make a contribution by calling the Foundation for Madison's Public Schools at 608–232–7820 or find a link to the foundation's website at nbc15.com.