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Whale Helps Raise Cancer Awareness

Whale Helps Raise Cancer Awareness

Happy animal story of the week: Paddleboard surfer Jodie Nelson got a helping hand (or should I say flipper?) from the animal kingdom last Sunday, March 28 when she set out on a 40-mile trek to raise cancer awareness off the coast of California.

The 34-year-old Southern California woman paddled from Santa Catalina Island to Dana Point, a journey that took nine hours. During the grueling feat, a 30-foot minke whale showed up to give his support. The two traveled side-by-side for two hours, during which time Nelson dubbed the whale “Larry”. According to GrindTV, Larry “rolled around repeatedly alongside her and blew bubbles beneath her board.”

Inspired by her best friend who is currently battling breast cancer, as well as her mother and aunt who both survived cancer, Nelson decided to take on a 40-mile paddling challenge to raise money and to inspire others. She told, “I wanted to put myself out there in a dangerous and scary, overwhelming situation; something that was big and just to show people that you can win that battle with that big, scary thing called cancer.”

Nelson wasn’t particularly surprised by her aquatic companion, telling GrindTV, “To me it was a total God thing. We prayed at four that morning that God would reveal his beauty and creation and nature, and allow me to endure this long trek, so for me it’s not such a huge surprise that this happened.”

Nelson completed the trip, becoming the first woman to ever do so. And with Larry’s help, Jodie has now surpassed her original goal of $100,000, according to her Paddle With a Purpose page. What a team!

Read more: Behavior & Communication, Do Good, Nature & Wildlife, Pets, ,

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Samantha Shook

Samantha is an editor and writer living in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is an animal lover who is also passionate about beauty, psychology, spirituality, and art.


+ add your own
6:12AM PDT on May 7, 2013

Hope this can convince more people to respect their life

6:11PM PDT on May 14, 2012


12:48PM PDT on May 9, 2012

thank you! so beautyful

8:12AM PDT on Apr 20, 2012

Thank you

12:36AM PDT on Aug 21, 2011

Thanks for the article.

9:16PM PDT on Jun 27, 2010

that is so awesome, what a nice article (and an amazing experience for her).

8:29AM PDT on Jun 7, 2010

What a nice fish tale. Thanks!

7:00AM PDT on May 5, 2010


10:35PM PDT on May 3, 2010

I can't imagine how amazing it felt to travel that closely with such a majestic creature!

8:45PM PDT on May 3, 2010

what an intelligent creature the whale is... remember to sign the petitions to stop the whale slaughter! They need more signatures.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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