Casselberry swim instructor teaches 4 generations to swim from backyard pool

Former students return with kids of their own

CASSELBERRY, Fla. – Lynn Stevens has been teaching swimming lessons from her backyard pool in Casselberry for 45 years. She said in some cases four generations have learned to swim under her guidance. 

Stevens is this week's Getting Results Award winner. 

The Red Cross trained volunteer has spent her life around the water and feels everyone should know how to swim.  

"We're surrounded by water and practically every other house has a pool," she says. "That's why everybody needs to learn good water safety habits, that's what we teach."

Stevens estimates she's taught thousands of people both young and old to swim over the years. Her oldest student was 72 years old. 

She said former students she taught as kids often return as adults with children of their own.

"They keep coming," Stevens said. "They say 'You can't stop now because I have little Suzy or little Johnny coming."

Dana Hucek learned to swim in Stevens' pool as a child, then she brought her daughter when it was time for lessons.

"She's an icon of Casselberry," Hucek said. "As long as Lynne is teaching, we'll be here."

Stevens was nominated by former student Annye Refoe, who took classes as a adult.

"Seven years ago I decided to face my fears and one of those fears was that I was very uncomfortable in water," she said. "I was nervous about coming to class but then I heard about Lynne."

Refoe learned to swim and now returns to the pool with her grand nephew. 

"I wanted to bring him to the best and that's exactly what I did," she said.

Former students told News 6 that the place hasn't changed much over the years. The 60,000-gallon pool has been resurfaced, but the benches built years ago remain the same.

"When they come to me, they bring their children and they walk up the walkway and say you shrunk the pool, it was much bigger," Stevens said. "That gives me a good feeling knowing they're comfortable here."

At 77, Stevens said she has no plans to retire --too many people would be disappointed.

"My family says, 'Mom, it's time to quit' and my extended family, my swimming family says 'You can't quit yet," Stevens says.

Swim classes have ended for the this season. Stevens said she begins scheduling for the summer in April. Potential students can call her at 407-699-8531.

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