It took Kuo Wei-chi (郭韋齊) three-and-a-half hours to finish a 3km swim across Sun Moon Lake (日月潭) yesterday, a feat that completed the amputee’s three dreams of making the swim, biking around Taiwan and climbing its highest peak — the 3,952m Yushan (玉山), also known as Jade Mountain.
Kuo was among 187 physically disabled people who comprised the first group of more than 20,000 swimmers from 26 nations to swim across Sun Moon Lake yesterday and today.
Kuo, whose hands and feet were amputated at the age of seven due to a high fever and sepsis, strove her way to the other shore of the lake, guided by her coach.
Photo: Hsieh Chieh-yu, Taipei Times
“I take this as the best birthday gift to myself,” said Kuo, who turned 23 yesterday.
Also among the group of disabled people attempting the swim was Lai Yung-chieh (賴永傑), president of the Taichung City Association for the Welfare of the Visually Impaired, who completed the swim in 55 minutes to take first place in the group.
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) also participated in the event, completing the challenge in 1 hour, 38 minutes.
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YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb