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Diving community comes together for Bailey Wind

Dive-athon raises money to cover Shaker student's medical costs

Shaker senior Bailey Wind watches the action at a dive-athon organized in her honor Sunday at RPI. Wind was one of two teens injured in a Dec. 1 accident on the Northway, which also claimed the lives of Shenendehowa student-athletes Chris Stewart and Deanna Rivers. Wind dove for Shaker in the fall and has a scholarship to the University of Tennessee.

Shaker senior Bailey Wind watches the action at a dive-athon organized in her honor Sunday at RPI. Wind was one of two teens injured in a Dec. 1 accident on the Northway, which also claimed the lives of Shenendehowa student-athletes Chris Stewart and Deanna Rivers. Wind dove for Shaker in the fall and has a scholarship to the University of Tennessee. Photo by Rob Jonas.

— “Eventually, she did reach me and we had a nice long chat — maybe as long as 30 minutes,” said Wind.

The reason Franklin and Tebow knew to call the injured student-athletes was a Twitter campaign that started locally and went viral within minutes on the social network. Thousands of Tweets featuring “#TebowCallMatt” and “#MissyCallBailey” were sent until they made the calls.

“I didn’t know the Twitter thing was going on because my phone broke in the accident,” said Wind. “When I got ahold of a phone and saw what happened, I thought this was crazy.”

The local support grew from there. Shaker students wore green the Monday following the accident in support of Shen, and Shen students returned the favor the next day by wearing blue for Shaker. Several other area high schools followed suit with either Shen green or Shaker blue. Students and their families from around the region attended a Dec. 4 vigil at Shen’s Steuerwald Stadium.

“As devastating as it was, it was very uplifting to see everyone come together,” said Niskayuna diving coach Liz Slavin. “This was something that impacted so many people because they knew those kids.”

“It’s unbelievable because we’re rival schools,” said Wind. “And even other schools around the area that had no connection to us showed their support.”

Moran wanted to do her part for Wind, so she came up with the idea of having a dive-athon. Soon, she had commitments from more than 50 divers across eastern New York.

“I thought of the idea on a Monday, and in like five days it was a big thing,” said Moran. “It was just crazy how quickly it evolved into this.”

Whitesboro junior Emily Deck was one of the divers who traveled more than an hour to participate in the dive-athon.

“Bailey’s been such an amazing diver,” said Deck, who is also a member of Flip and Rip. “I just knew I had to be here.”

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