Welcome, Md. Student Completes Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii

Brian Boyle, of Welcome, Md., at the finish line of the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii in October.
ST. MARY'S CITY, Md. (November 15, 2007) - Brian Boyle, a junior majoring in art at St. Mary's College of Maryland, brings new meaning to the words perseverance, commitment and endurance. Boyle, who survived a near fatal auto accident three years ago, completed the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii in October. His story will be part of an NBC Sports program scheduled for Dec. 1 at 4:30 p.m.

Boyle and his parents live in Welcome, Maryland.

This month Boyle is back at the College and with the swim team on deck and in the water. His coach, Andre Barbins said, "We are very excited for Brian that he completed the grueling Ironman in Hawaii. Three years ago we set goals for him to just swim a half hour in practice. Now he can compete with the St. Mary's College Swim Team. It is amazing that he has fully recovered from such a horrific accident."

Boyle was a state-level high school swimmer when he was severely injured in an auto accident on July 6, 2004. He was taken to a Prince George's County hospital and nearly died eight times on the operating table. His parents were told he would never walk again, but he defied the odds and recovered. Weighing only 129 pounds when he left the hospital, the five-foot-eleven-inch Boyle built back his body so that he could attend college and continue with his athletic goals.

"I never gave up on my dream of going to St. Mary's College," Boyle said. "If I had never come here, the Ironman and my dream of swimming again would never have happened." Juggling school and athletic training, Boyle now weighs 180 pounds and wants to inspire others to "never give up on their dreams in life no mater how hard life gets for them."

On a whim, Boyle sent his story to the organizers of Ironman triathlon, a race first held in 1978 as a dare by Navy seals. Tens of thousands of triathletes try to get one of the coveted spots each year. The event is open to the public. To his amazement, Boyle heard back from the Ironman president that they wanted him to be a part of their event, and to participate as the event's "inspirational athlete".

The Ironman triathlon consists of a 2.4-mile swim in Kailua-Kona Bay, a 112-mile bike ride across the Hawaiian lava desert, and ends with a 26- mile run along the western coast of the Big Island. Boyle completed the race in 14 hours, 42 minutes, and 35 seconds - in 1564 place.

"This was the greatest day of my life," the 21-year-old said, after finishing the race.

Three different NBC news crews followed Boyle for the sports program that is scheduled to air Saturday, Dec. 1 at 4:30 p.m.

Boyle's parents were also there in Hawaii to cheer him on. Brian's mother, JoAnne Boyle, works at Naval Air Station Patuxent River for NAVAIR 6.7 as a contract support services national manager. Brian's dad is Garth Boyles, who with his business partner, Deane Guy, owns/operates D & G Concrete Pumping, in Clements, Maryland.

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