Tribute to Dale Petranech

MA Web Author
Aug 2, 2019

Dale Petranech, long time Open Water swimmer and advocate and former member of the Middle Atlantic Board of Directors, passed away in June.  “Meester Dale” - as Dale Petranech was known around the world by open water swimmers, coaches and administrators - was a pioneer in open water and marathon swimming.  As the first Chairman of the USA Swimming's Open Water Swimming Committee, and a member of the FINA Open Water Technical Committee, he helped the sport grow across the country and the world while continuing his personal swimming career, becoming at the age of 50 the oldest swimmer to cross the Catalina Channel.  Dale was honored by being inducted into both the International Swimming Hall of Fame and the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame.  Here is a great tribute to Dale from the INternational Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame

As Middle Atlantic’s Open Water Chair, Dale provided training opportunities for meet hosts, coaches and officials, and educated New Jersey beach patrol staff in critical safety measures.  He succeeded in promoting the 22.75-mile Atlantic City Around the Island professional marathon swim, drawing marathon athletes from all over the world. During the years when Dale was involved with that event, it was part of the FINA Marathon Swim Series, with significant monetary prizes for the top finishers.

Dale’s contributions to Middle Atlantic did not stop with Open Water Swimming – he also served as Treasurer, and was a valuable contributor at Board of Directors and Finance Committee meetings.  He will be missed.  See the full obituary here