Francis Swims Again
Francis Crowley, age 84, is a new resident of Brookdale Kingston in Kingston, TN. Right away, the attentive staff at her Brookdale community realized that Francis has a special wish that she longed to fulfill. Growing up on the water in Sarasota, Francis’ eyes lit up as she shared how much the ocean and swimming has always been a part of her life. She was a strong swimmer who taught swim lessons for many years as a volunteer. Francis remembers teaching all of the different strokes to the same group of kids and the joy of getting to see them progress over the years. In addition to teaching kids how to swim, she also taught lifesaving skills. Later she and her husband had a boat which they eventually had to give up as Francis started having balance issues.
Francis’ longtime wish was to get back into a swimming pool, something that she hadn't done in over 30 years. She explained how being back in the water would be like getting back part of her childhood where she “felt so free” in the water. She misses swimming and that feeling of buoyancy, especially now that she is mostly confined to her wheelchair. Francis elaborates, “I have wanted to go swimming for a long time but didn’t think I could because of being in a wheelchair. I feel like I could fly to the moon. My dreams are big but my ability to do my dreams feels small. Making this dream come true would be quite a feat!”
Wish of a Lifetime partnered with Brookdale to make Francis' longtime wish become a reality. On June 27th, 2016, Francis was assisted back into the water of a warm water pool to enjoy the thrill of swimming once again.