Central Kitsap swimmer Torres hosts fundraiser
By MIKE BALDWIN
Central Kitsap Reporter Sports Writer
May 19, 2011 · Updated 5:06 PM
Jeremy Torres is known for swimming his way to a state title, but when he jumps into the water Saturday, he will honor his late grandfather.
The Central Kitsap High School senior started a fundraiser at the Olympic Aquatic Center in East Bremerton to benefit the Alzheimer’s Association. Torres’ grandfather, Efren Magana, died last January due to complications of dementia.
As part of a social studies project and graduation requirement, Torres decided to organize “A Swim to Remember.” The event starts at 10:30 a.m. and includes a timed 500-yard swim with a donation fee of $10 to participate. A silent auction will also be held. All proceeds benefit the Alzheimer’s Association. The fundraiser will end at 2 p.m. Torres said his grandfather’s death inspired him to help others by organizing Saturday’s swim.
“It’s a terrible disease,” Torres said. “I’ve seen how it can affect not only the person, but also the entire family. I loved my grandpa and I have a passion for swimming, so I’m fusing them together.”
Torres (pictured) will swim at the fundraiser along with his Central Kitsap relay teammates Tyler Hirata, Jason Soria and Brendan Weiner. The four won a state title last winter.
Torres’ uncle, Tim Kizziah, said the family is overwhelmed by the support for the weekend swim.
“We went through a lot seeing Jeremy’s grandpa in a memory facility for two years, so we got close with other families,” Kizziah said. “It’s opened our eyes to this disease and we’re extremely proud of Jeremy.”
Torres said that he wants to continue the swim fundraiser on an annual basis.
“We loved him very much and my family wouldn’t miss this for the world,” Torres said.
The senior has completed nine years of competitive swimming and will continue at Hartwick College (New York) next fall. For more information, contact Torres at (360) 697-5942.