YMCA Healthy Kids® Day

Meet John katchenago

He Achieved His Goal

John Katchenago

Swim program serves those who serve

Last summer, John Katchenago’s goal was to become a working diver for NOAA (National Oceanographic Atmospheric Administration). The first step: He had to pass a swim test. “There are a couple of components to it,” John explains, and the one that was getting to me the most was the 25-yard underwater swim.”

John looked around town for pool availability, and that’s when he found the Y and coach Ethan Harkleroad. “Ethan not only helped me complete the swim, now I can do it easily. I even shaved a few minutes off my time for the other swim requirements.” John liked being able to head over to the Y in the evening after work and on the weekends to hone his skills. He recently completed another swim test to stay current in his certifications. “It went well!”

After working with John, coach Ethan saw an opportunity to help make a difference in the lives of those who serve our country. Thanks to his initiative, the Y is offering free swim clinics for active-service personnel. “We want to help more people gain confidence in the water and work on the skills required for promotion or advancement in rank,” Ethan says. — June 2015