Pacific Swimming
Level 4
Excellence 300

Putting Character First

Oridna Aquatics Senior (Graduate) Letters

“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing. Albert Einstein

Orinda Aquatics has a long history of having their graduating seniors write a "Letter to the Team". More than anything, these letters offer a poignant glimpse into the culture of the team and the immeasurable growth of these extraordinary athletes. They reveal the true benefits of sports, teams, life, lessons, and a team culture driven by character. Please see an example below and the links to the graduating Senior Letters each year.

Letter to Orinda Aquatics Graduates from Don & Ron

Senior Letter: Colleen O’Brien

I’m not eloquent enough to adequately articulate what you all have meant to me in my journey over the past several years. But just for the sake of being cliche, I’ll say it anyway: You have made me who I am today.

Anyone who has experienced the rollercoaster ride that is high school can tell you that it’s not exactly a walk in the park. It’s not just the late nights, unsympathetic teachers, apathetic classmates, and multitude of extracurricular activities; it’s the fact that you have to decide who you are in the process. You have to decide what you believe in, what you stand for, and what your role is in the Big Picture. None of these dilemmas are avoidable, and none are easily resolved. When faced with these forks in my journey, I would have been left floundering without the firm base Orinda Aquatics has become in my life.

At every crossroads I struggled with, I fell back on what I learned here. I would remember how many people believed in and supported me, and remember the high character athlete and person I dreamed of becoming. Suddenly, my path would become clear.

I continue to be inspired each and every day by the spirit of this team. It manifests itself in the smallest, most beautiful details; a warm smile, a hug, a veteran swimmer patiently explaining a drill to a newcomer, a simple “How are you doing?”. I walk away from every practice reinvigorated and motivated to become a better person.

As I open the next chapter of my life, I know I will continue to rely on all that Orinda Aquatics has helped me learn about myself and what it means to be an athlete and a teammate. I hope to use this knowledge to go forward and inspire someone else in the way you all have inspired me. To each and every member of this team I have ever known, from those who were seniors when I joined to those I just had the privilege of meeting this year: thank you for everything, I love you and will miss you dearly. To Ronnie and Donnie: please continue making the world a better place, one person at a time.

Senior Letters by Year


2020 - coming