KEY WEST, Fla. — Looking dazed and sunburned, U.S. endurance swimmer Diana Nyad walked on to the shore Monday, becoming the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without the help of a shark cage.
The 64-year-old Nyad swam up to the beach just before 2 p.m. EDT, about 53 hours after she began her journey in Havana on Saturday. As she approached, spectators waded into waist-high water and surrounded her, taking pictures and cheering her on.
"I have three messages. One is, we should never, ever give up. Two is, you're never too old to chase your dream. Three is, it looks like a solitary sport, but it is a team," she said on the beach.
"I have to say, I'm a little bit out of it right now," Nyad said. She gestured toward her swollen lips, and simply said "seawater."
Her team said she had been slurring her words while she was out in the water. She was on a stretcher on the beach and received an IV before she was taken by ambulance to a hospital.