Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Pain Burns Away Fear...

From: Charlene Cole

Subject: July 18, 1968

Date: Sun, 14 Jun 2009 19:26:15 -0400

Hi, found the clipping and will attach it. This copy will be better than getting it off a microfilm reader.



Subject: RE: July 18, 1968

Date: Fri, 19 Jun 2009 14:47:22 -0400

Thank you so much Charlene! I did not expect this - it is a very pleasant surprise today.

The news story erred in that we finished (not started) our swim at Scotty's Boat Livery (later after Scotty Hayward passed on that livery became Kappy's Boats - there's Sandy Pond Memories BLOG posting about that).
We started the swim along the opposite shore due east, where the "Ghost Channel" appeared one year (see that Sandy Pond Memories BLOG posting too).

Let me tell you what the story doesn't say.

The news story doesn't say that I was coached intensely by my older brother Kip all the way across the Pond.

Kip was in Dad's boat as a safety observer. (We might have been kids but we weren't stupid.)

The story doesn't say that I was no athlete and skinny as a rail so after about a half an hour of swimming my arms started cramping in a big way. I wanted to stop. I had to stop... I could barely stay afloat much less propel myself towards the goal. Fear manifested itself.

The story doesn't say that Kip yelled and cajoled me from the boat, saying anything to motivate me to ignore the cramps and keep going. (Some of it was nasty and I cannot repeat it to a lady).

Of course I kept going somehow and finished the thing. I will never forget that grueling swim that day - probably one of the hardest things I had done up to that point... It took about 2 weeks for my arms to feel normal again.

The 3 boys in my company were summer friends whose families had summer cottages on the Pond.

Mickey Matvyak, Michael Savage, and Bill O'Connor were more athletic than I and recovered much quicker.

After this little trial, I consciously put on some muscle by working out during the year that followed.Funny thing is that I believe I could do it now, 41 years later, thanks to the Navy survival training, a lot of swimming experience, and better upper body strength... It was so nice of you to research this for me.

Thanks again!

Best Regards,


Stephen Kappesser


To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under Heaven... Ecclesiates 3:1


From: Charlene Cole

Subject: RE: July 18, 1968

Date: Sat, 20 Jun 2009 08:34:17 -0400

You are so welcome....It was much easier to locate in the newspaper collection at the History Center than on a microfilm reader. Can I print "the" story and "your" story in my column? Did you go to school with Jack Parker? He just died. Charlene

From: skappesser@hotmail.com
To: Charlene Cole
Subject: RE: July 18, 1968
Date: Sun, 21 Jun 2009 05:08:37 -0400

Hi Charlene- You are so gracious for asking my permission - - of course you include the story in your column - a "blast from the past" so to speak, but since I moved away from Sandy Pond so very long ago (1980) when I entered the Navy, and I've only visited a few dozen times since, there's a good chance that I have faded from the collective memory of Sandy Creek / Sandy Pond.
... There is a story from the 50s that was in one of the Syracuse papers. My Dad Ed Kappesser was a Trooper in those days and he investigated a freak accident. Apparently a military aircraft was engaged in live-fire target practice on the Lake and a few rounds from its weapons landed in a cottage on the shore. Thank God nobody was hurt but it was a big story there for a while. The newspaper interviewed my Dad and I remember Mom saying he was even on TV - which was a real big deal in the 50's.

Gotta go - plenty to take care of, even on Father's Day!
God Bless,

RE: July 18, 1968‏
Charlene Cole
Mon 6/22/09 12:25 PM
Steve Kappesser (skappesser@hotmail.com)

The Alumni community remembers you and I am sure many others. My readers like to read about people from the area. If you find that story at the library and need a better copy let me know.


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