MARCUS TITUS from Phoenix AZ is a co-winner of the 2011 Zorn Award. Marcus is a member of Tucson Ford Aquatics where his current coach is Rick Demont. Marcus is deaf. In his own words, “I was born deaf and use a hearing aid and an interpreter to help me communicate. With the support of my family, friends, and interpreter, I’ve been able to succeed in this sport. I’ve never let my inability to hear slow me down, in or out of the pool. And although I compete in a completely noise-less environment, the only reason you’d ever suspect I’m not hearing is that I use a strobe light on the starting blocks to jump into the pool. I’m motivated to show that I can compete alongside the country’s best, even if I can’t hear the starting gun and the screaming fans.”
Marcus has achieved his goal of competing alongside the country’s best. During our award consideration period, Marcus was 4th in the 100m breaststroke at the August 2010 Conoco Phillips Nationals with a time of 1:00.93 behind Mike Alexandrov, Mark Gangloff, and Eric Shanteau. He finaled in the 100m breaststroke in several Grand Prix meets, satisfying the Olympic Trials qualifying time with each of his performances. Marcus is a member of the USA Swimming national team.
Just after our nomination deadline of July 31, Marcus competed in the 2011 World Deaf Swimming Championships in Coimbra Portugal. Marcus swept the breaststroke events, and also won gold in the 50m free and 50m fly and silver as a member of the 4 x 100m medley relay. His next challenge will occur in mid-October, when he will represent the United States at the Pan American Games in Guadalajara Mexico.
The purpose of the Trischa L. Zorn Award is to recognize a swimmer with a disability (or relay team) for outstanding performances during the previous year.
(editor: Gail Dummer)