“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right.” – Henry Ford
A Dream Come True:
Hunter Helmick becomes the first America to successfully swim the entire length of Australia’s longest river, The River Murray – a total distance of 2412 km in 120 days.
Team Help! had the opportunity to meet with youth and communities along the river, inspiring dreams and bringing awareness to depression and the high rate of suicide among the younger generation.
“We undertook the journey to inspire the youth of Australia and bring awareness to the high rate of suicide among the younger generation.”
On average, the 25-year-old Hunter maintained a stroke rate of 55 strokes per minute traveling at speeds of 3.5 – 4 km an hour, swimming an average of 5 hours every day, often swimming 8 – 10 hours in wind, rain and 40°C heat. Water temperatures fluctuated from 12°C to 27°C.
During the 4-month stage swim, Hunter lost 13 pounds while wearing through two wetsuits. His toenails turned orange from the minerals in the water and he suffered from a series of severe ear infections. “During the swim, we encountered everything from venomous snakes to whirlpools, snags, wind, lightning, and extreme fatigue. An endurance swim was not really my life’s dream. In fact, the most I had ever swum before this journey was 6 km. But doing something epic that inspires others to live big, there’s a legacy worth leaving behind.
Inspiration brings hope. Hope is the greatest cure for depression and suicide. So we’re doing something epic. In the process, youth and communities are finding hope – believing anything might be possible.”
His 55-year-old father Eric swam 732 km while the trio were joined by escort team members from around the world. Eric stopped swimming daily in order to manage the logistical aspects of the journey. “We sold everything, including our home – and travelled halfway around the world to inspire the youth of Australia,” explained Eric. “There was not always access to the shore crew which made the journey much more difficult.”
TEAM HELP! MEDIA KIT