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French amputee swims English Channel in 13 hours

09-21-2010 09:34 BJT

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A Frenchman, whose arms and legs were amputated, has swum across the English Channel using leg prostheses with flippers attached.

Philippe Croizon had expected the tough crossing to take up to 24 hours, and instead he finished in only 13 and a half.

The 42-year-old set off from Folkestone on the British side of the English Channel and arrived near the French town of Wissant. At the narrowest point, the crossing is about 34 kilometers.

Philippe Croizon said, "At one moment, I looked up to see my little boys up there cheering me: Hooray daddy we love you, Hooray daddy we love you. And then I crack, I cry?. pure happiness. It is pure happiness."

A Frenchman, whose arms and legs were amputated, has swum across the English Channel
using leg prostheses with flippers attached.

The swimmer lost his arms and legs after suffering an electric shock in 1994.

Croizon's specially designed leg prostheses, which end in flippers, allow him to propel himself through the water.

His truncated upper arms go through the motions of the crawl, and he breathes through a snorkel.

Philippe Croizon said, "If there is one thing I'll take from what I've achieved, and transmit it to others, it would be that we can all make it. You only need to really want it, to want to surpass yourself, and it becomes doable."

Croizon made headlines in 2007 for parachuting from an aeroplane. He wrote a book about his experiences called "I decided to live".


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