The Zombie Patrol
The Zombie Patrol (or the Arch Academy Zombies) is an open water swimming pod that was started for a select group of students of the Arch Academy San Diego to prepare for the 2014 Annual Alcatraz Sharkfest Swim. After that success they set their sights on a crossing of the Catalina Channel, and on 5 September 2014 the two teams swimming in tandem pairs finished in under 12 hours. The Zombies continued to train through the winter and in June 2015, they two relays had a successful crossing of the English Channel, both in just over 13 hours. Also in 2015, the Zombies swam and set a record "First" swimming 41 miles from Santa Barbara Island Arch Point to Anacapa Island Arch Rock.
They are currently training to swim the Ka'iwi (Molokai) Channel in Aug 2016.
They are coached by Dan Simonelli and Arch Academy Director Cheryl Zak.
To be a Zombie, you must be at the La Jolla Cove at 6 AM to train 3 days a week, complete one hour of warm-up, and swim one hour in the open water, all year around. This helps build the Zombies’ endurance, stamina, and allows them to learn more about working as a cohesive team.
The Arch Academy
The Zombies are students at the [Arch Academy], a private school for children with autism, bipolar disorder, depression, drug or alcohol addiction, anxiety issues and learning disabilities. Arch has always integrated rigorous physical activity into its curriculum, and the swim team is a runaway success.
- Zach Irvine, age 15 nicknamed Popsicle
- Faith Irvine, age 14 nicknamed Squeaky
- Kaylee Kussman, age 17 nicknamed K-Po
- Matt Georgy, age 15 nicknamed Sweats
- Diana Linney, age 17 nicknamed Sonar
- Paul Lindberg, age 17 nicknamed Shortcut
- Maddy Israel, age 17 nicknamed The Machine
- CJ Fotinos, age 16 nicknamed Soup
- Lauren Weinreb, age 16 nicknamed Honey Badger
- Wesley Metcalfe, age 17 nicknamed Joker
- Parth Desai, age 15 nicknamed Lotus
- Noah Rowan, age 17 nicknamed Turbo
- Betzi Lindberg, age 20 nicknamed Mantis
- Cheryl Zak, age 52 nicknamed Joan of Arch
- Dan Simonelli, age 49 nicknamed Swimonelli
- Dan Simonelli Talks About Helping Others On WOWSA Live
- The Zombie Patrol
- Special Needs Swim Team Pushes Limits
- Help The Zombies Swim The English Channel
- Getting Up Early By The Zombie Patrol
- Nicknames In The Open Water Swimming World
- Dan Simonelli Wins The Barra Award For Best Overall Year
- Dan Simonelli Helps Create A Sea Of Change
- World Open Water Swimming Association
- Open Water Swimming