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After training for months, the lifelong 49-year-old swimmer launched out just after midnight on Thursday morning to swim from Catalina Island to the shore of Rancho Palos Verdes.
More than 13 hours later, Robles â€” after battling unexpected rough seas that carried him several miles off course â€” staggered onto shore below Trump National Golf Club and immediately collapsed. On Friday, he remained hospitalized recovering from hypothermia and, according to medical tests, from what appeared to be also a mild heart attack.
The bright spot: Doctors released him from the hospital Friday afternoon after tests revealed there was no lasting damage to his heart â€” and his swim had raised thousands of dollars in pledges that will benefit the construction of classrooms at a school in Nicaragua, a cause long supported by his church in Hermosa Beach. […]
â€œBy the time I got close to shore, the water was so rough and the wind was blowing super hard,â€ he said. â€œThen as I swam toward the shore, thoroughly exhausted, the next thing thrown at me was a kelp bed, it covered me like a blanket, I had to fight my way through it.â€