> US SAILING Media > Sailor of the Week > 2009 > Sailor of the Week - November, 2009 > Eileen Campbell
Sailor of the Week: Oct. 29 - Nov. 4
Eileen Campbell (Hazlet, N.J.) learned how to sail 15 years ago while vacationing in Newport, R.I. w ith her husband, David. Sailing has made a life-changing impact on her, almost as much as she has made on the loc al com munity.
Eileen and Dave joined the Atlantic Highlands Yacht Club (AHYC) in 2004, and have been racing their 1985 C&C 33, CODA, in the Ms. Race hosted by the Sandy Hook Bay. The Ms. Race is an annual sailing event comprise d of all female crews racing to benefit, 180 Turning Lives Around (www.180nj.org), an organization that assists victims of domestic violence and abuse in Monmouth County (N.J.).
“My goal is to spread the word about this race,” said Eileen. “It’s a fun event for a wonderful cause and I would like to see it grow.”
A day of racing at this year’s event on Aug. 22 took an unexpected turn. As Eileen’s team rounded the breakwater and made for the start line, they noticed something in the water. It was a young man, swimming against the current trying to get to the breakwater. Eileen swung the boat around in the direction of the swimmer. They stopped just ahead of him, idled and dropped the stern swim ladder. Relieved and tired, the swimmer climbed onboard. He had been tubing with his family and friends, and had fallen off without immediate notice. They were searching another part of the bay for him. Fortunately, he was wearing a life jacket and there wasn’t much boat traffic. Soon after, the young man was dropped off to his boat.
Despite the time spent on the rescue, Eileen and crew made it to the start line in time for racing. “All in all it was a great day with a few surprises and a few lessons learned,” Eileen concluded. “We were lucky to be in the right place at the right time.”
Following their third place finish, Eileen added: “I’m grateful for the excellent crew work and resourcefulness of all the ladies that sailed with me.” Eileen’s crew included, Laura Cramer, Bernadette Hearne, Leslie Olving, Ellen Stefanacci, Donna Syers, and Colleen Bradley Van Pell.