- Diana Nyad
- United States (,Key West)
The first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage or fins is Diana Nyad (USA, b. 22 August 1949), who swam from Havana, Cuba, to Key West, Florida, USA, in 52 hr 54 min 18.6 sec from 31 August to 2 September 2013.
Diana had attempted the 103-mile swim from Cuba to Florida four times before the successful swim. Before Diana, Walter Poenisch (USA) and Susie Mulroney (Australia) swam the Strait in 1978 and 1997 respectively but used shark cages, which can provide propulsion. Poenisch also used fins and took three short breaks on a boat. Diana’s crew touched her and helped her put on her stinger suit while she was in the water but she maintains she was never supported by another human being, lifted up, or helped by buoyancy.