Mel Shapiro

Distinguished professor, UCLA

Gerry taught me to swim. I can truly say, Gerry is a great coach, a born coach, and I was very lucky to meet and work with him. 

I was 64 years old, recently recovering from a heart attack and quintuple by-pass.  I had a fear of water, an element I had avoided all my life.  Gerry said if I was committed, he would teach me. 

I joined the Bruin Masters swim club, he helped teach me and eventually I joined the swimmers in lane 8 (slow lane).  I am still in lane 8, holding my own.  If it were not for Gerry I would never have learned, I would never pushed myself, I would never have achieved any of the skills I have now have.  I would have given up, grown old, fat and unhealthy, like I was. He changed my life.

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