Plungers brave freezing temps to dive into freezing water

Polar Plunge raises funds for Special Olympics


December 2, 2019

Havre Daily News/Jack Lambert

Frank English reacts as he emerges from the pool and pulls his pig mask off, releasing icy water, during the SubZero Super Hero Polar Plunge Saturday to raise money for Special Olympics Montana.

The temperature wasn't the only thing cold Saturday as 14 plungers signed up and dove into an ice-filled pool as part of the annual Havre SubZero SuperHero Polar Plunge.

Members of the local Hill County Search and Rescue were on hand and in the water to assist anyone who was having difficulty getting out of the water.

Hill County Search and Rescue President Paul Nugent said Search and Rescue has been volunteering at the Polar Plunge for the past six to seven years.

"We come down and help set up the warming tents, set up the pool, fill it up with water, put ice in the pool and just help them out," he said. "It's a good fundraiser. I like the idea it goes for the Special Olympics and it's a worthwhile event."

Nugent said the temperature outside was much colder this year compared to last year, but the water might have felt warmer just because the air is colder.

Plunger Cheyenne Schafer and partner A.J. Rucinsky were team "Ice Holes" and together raised $1,100 for the event to go back to Special Olympics Montana. 

Schafer said she has participated in the polar plunge for the past four years.

"I take care of people with special needs and that's something I like to do," she said. "It is fun and it helps them out." 

Plunger Kevin Holmes said he is very passionate about helping out in Special Olympics because he used to be a volunteer coach at their seasonal games.

"I like to assist people in getting to where they want to go, to what they love," he said.

He and two other Havre residents were part of a team called Hi-Line Angels, referring to their employment at Angel Care in Havre.

Special Olympics Montana Development Director Tom Hazen said the event raised more than $2,000.  

"I think it went really well overall, he said. "I think the weather shrank the crowd a little bit, but I think everyone there had a wonderful time."

Havre Daily News/Jack Lambert

Cheyenne Schafer and A.J. Rucinsky react Saturday as they plunge into the icy water during the SubZero Super Hero Polar Plunge Saturday to raise money for Special Olympics Montana.


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