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Charles Zimmy

Forest Lawn Cemetery

Charles Zimmy was born Charles Zibelman, the son of Russian immigrants.  As a young boy he lost his legs in a vehicular accident.  He later became a very famous marathon swimmer.  His early career was spent performing in carnivals but he soon struck out on his own.  He performed swimming and diving exhibitions in Chicago in the 1920s.  There were several unsuccessful swimming ventures in the English and Catalina Channels.  He successfully swam from Albany to New York and set the record for consecutive hours swimming (100).  The later part of his life is largely unknown as there is little record of him after the 1930s.  Records indicate that he was interned in Forest Lawn in 1952.



Chicago Daily Tribune, August 10, 1927.  See also, Adam Bernstein, “Recalling a Legless Daredevil,” Washington Post, March 12, 2010; available from (accessed June 29, 2012).      

Biographical information provided by Norfolk Bureau of Cemeteries.

Visitor Information

Visitor Hours: Sunrise to Sunset

Office hours: Monday to Sunday 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM

Free parking inside cemetery.

Admission Cost: Free

Address: 8100 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23505

Official web site for more information:

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