MIAMI (AP) — Endurance athlete Diana Nyad says she was disappointed and frustrated that her dream of swimming from Cuba to Florida was dashed by the searing pain of Portuguese man o’ war stings.
Nyad ended her swim Sunday about halfway through, telling The Associated Press the stings temporarily paralyzed her spine. Nyad says the pain was unspeakable and medics warned another sting could be life-threatening.
Nyad says “it’s a huge disappointment,” but she said she will eventually focus on the positive and her desire to inspire others.
Team members said tentacles from the creatures looked like they had branded Nyad, leaving red welts.
She wore loose bandages and rehydrated on her boat Sunday as her team headed for the Florida Keys.
Well-wishers flocked to social media sites, calling her an inspiration.