A community pool in the Baltimore area last week was destroyed by a fire on what was supposed to be the facility’s opening day for its 62nd season.
Flames tore through the main office building at the Lochearn Community Club Swimming Pool, which was built in the 1950s and housed locker rooms and all of the pool equipment. The fire also destroyed mementos, awards and memorabilia from over the years.
Brian Pinkney, a volunteer swim coach at the facility for 21 years, said he’d been working for weeks to get the pool ready.
“I still have some marks on my thumb from raking weeks prior,” Pinkney told the local CBS affiliate.
An overwhelming community response resulted in a GoFundMe page that has already raised $23,000.
Lochearn Community Club opened in 1958 and was one of the first private pool clubs in Maryland to integrate in the 1970s.
Pinkney said ever since, the swim club has been committed to inclusion and diversity.
“Our swim team is so diverse that when we go to meets you will not see another swim team like ours, everyone uses the word diverse, but ours is completely diverse,” he said.