HOLLAND, Mich -- A man from North Carolina swam across Lake Michigan from Wisconsin's shoreline over to West Michigan. He came just short of reaching his goal.
Dr. Chris Lechner's goal was to swim from the Windpoint Lighthouse in Wisconsin to the big red lighthouse in Holland. It's about 80 miles.
Inspired by famous long distance swimmers, Jim Dreyer and Diana Nayad, Lechner set out Saturday after two years of serious training. He was equipped with his iPhone, a compass, a radio, and a paddle board. He said things went well, up until he started to see the Michigan shoreline. Then things went south, literally. Lechner said the shore didn’t seem to be getting any closer. Eventually, he became delusional and disoriented.
His wife, Jana, followed his tracking device which lead her to Saugatuck. She spotted her husband about a quarter mile off the shore. Not getting any closer, Lechner fired off a flare and the local fire department picked him up.
Lechner said, "The lake always wins."
He added, "When you get ripped out of the water by a 200 pound fireman you know that the lake has beaten you and so close. But I'm very happy I did it."