Local swim teams dive back into competition at Andersen AFB

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Breanna Christopher Volkmar
  • 36 Wing Public Affairs

The local swim community has been without a competitive swimming pool since early 2019, leaving the athletes with nowhere to showcase their training and dedication to the sport.

U.S. Air Force Maj. Kelvin Francis, a chaplain assigned to the 36th Wing, planned the second meet back, hosting three local teams and two military teams at the Andersen Air Force Base pool.

“My oldest son has been a competitive swimmer since 2009,” said Francis. “So everywhere we go, the swimming community is the first thing we commit to.”

The last meet held at Andersen AFB was in October 2019 prior to COVID-19. Since then the only competitive pool on the island has been closed down due to the expensive repairs needed.

“The Guam Swimming Federation asked me if it was possible to hold another meet on Andersen AFB,” said Francis. “So I went to work putting it together.”

Without the ability to compete, the athletes have no concrete evidence of their progress, hindering their opportunities to compete at other events off island and even compete for college scholarships.

“Our athletes come from all over the world, with varying experiences and challenges,” said Jeffrey Jorgensen, head coach of the Andersen Marlins swim team. “Seeing them compete and excel in their heats is an amazing experience to witness.”