Seattle Allows Cancer Victim To Swim Topless
Jodi Jaecks survived breast cancer by having a double mastectomy but she created waves when she wanted to swim topless in a public pool operated by the city of Seattle.
When city officials denied the 47-year-old’s request to swim topless since swimsuits irritated her chest, a side effect of chemotherapy, she took her fight to the news media.
A photo of Jaecks wearing only swimming trunks convinced city officials that her appearance would not alarm other swimmers, especially families with children, and she was given permission to use the pool topless during adult lap swim times.
Jaecks says she didn’t want to be a test case, but merely wanted to find some pain relief through water therapy.
“I never would have fathomed that I would see such a huge reception to this issue,” said Jaecks, who is still fighting for every woman with a double mastectomy — not just herself — to swim topless in Seattle’s public pools. “But I’m excited about it because what started as a personal thing has become a bigger, political issue about awareness.”
On Wednesday, the Seattle Parks and Recreation Department gave Jaecks permission to swim topless.
Seattle parks superintendent Christopher Williams, who is currently battling lung cancer, apologized to Jaecks
“I’m very sensitive to what this woman is going through,” Williams said. “On one hand our staff was just fulfilling their duties; but at some point, you have to back away from the policy and use common sense.”
(Photo courtesy of The Stranger. Click over to The Stranger to read more about Jaecks.)