His storied career included a world record 20:29 in the mile swim, Big Ten Conference titles at Ohio State and numerous national and international victories. World War II cheated him out of the Olympic Games: Keo Nakama was at his peak from 1940 – 1944. He was inducted Into the International Swimming Hall of Fame In 1975.

The accomplishment Nakama is best known for – swimming from the island of Moloka’i to O’ahu – didn’t happen until he was 40 years old! In September 1961, he crossed the 27-mile Ka’iwi Channel in 15 1/2 hours; he was the first verified to accomplish this feat.

BORN 1920

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