PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — No one has ever swam the length of Narragansett Bay, until now.
Ben Tuff is swimming 25 miles from Providence to Jamestown in an effort to raise money for Clean Ocean Access, an environmental non-profit working to keep Rhode Island waters clean and accessible.
His historic swim took off just before 5:30 a.m. at Fields Point in Providence and he will emerge at the Jamestown Wood Pile Pier between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.
This is the third marathon swim for the Jamestown man. In August 2020 he swam 23 miles around Conanicut Island to raise $54,000. Last year he swam 19 miles from Block Island to Jamestown and raised more than $106,000.
He is the first person in history to complete those two swims. He also didn’t wear a wetsuit for either of them.
Tuff is a recovered alcoholic whose “awe and respect of the ocean have not only helped him turn his life around but also raised more than $160,000 to date for Clean Ocean Access.”
He says he barely knew how to swim before recovering from alcohol, and a sponsor suggested he try the sport. He says he’s not a great swimmer but thrives on undertaking swimming feats.
So far he has raised more than $87,000 of his $100,000 goal.