A local businessman is now part of an elite group of swimmers who've successfully swam across Lake Erie.
Welcomed by friends and family, Elliot Spaeder successfully swam from Long Point, Ontario, to Freeport Beach in North East.
"The best part was easily the finish when I saw the finish when I saw land…kind of brought a little tear to my eye,” said Spaeder. “Seeing everyone here cheering for me, that was awesome."
Spaeder began his journey at 7:14 a.m. Tuesday, and was able to complete it around 6:45 p.m. In all, Spaeder swam 24.3 miles in 11 hours and 28 minutes, becoming the third fastest person to swim across Lake Erie.
“Some of the challenges, is just your body falling apart,” said Spaeder. “Shoulders starting to hurt, legs cramping up, and just pushing through it, through thick and thin."
It's an incredible moment not only for Spaeder, but for his family members as well.
“I'm just busted with pride,” said Elliot’s father Tim Spaeder. “I started Elliot swimming when he was six months old, at the Downtown YMCA, and by the time he was nine months old, he navigated the length of the pool."
"It's groundbreaking,” said Elliot’s sister Natalie Spaeder. “It's something that we can all look forward to, plus he's doing it for a great cause."
As for that cause, Spaeder is donating $10,000 he raised to the Downtown YMCA, where he learned to swim.