Who said slowing down comes with age?!
Certainly not 94-year-old Bob Hutcheson (CAN), who has just been confirmed by Guinness World Records as the oldest waterskier (male).
Bob’s epic waterskiing achievement took place on 19 July 2019 at 92 years-old and serves as an inspiration to those of all ages that it is never too late to pursue one’s dreams.
Two years following the event, Bob’s family wished to celebrate the remarkable achievement with the world and contacted Guinness World Records to make the record feat official.
Once the record was confirmed on 16 December 2020, official adjudicator Christina Flounders Conlon joined Bob and his family live on Zoom to announce the successful results and present Bob with his record holder certificate.
With an entrepreneurial mindset and competitive nature, Bob demonstrated perseverance and the ability to jump into any task despite the fear of failure from a young age.
He began waterskiing in 1949 at age 23, during a time when it was nearly impossible to buy waterskis and ropes.
“So, we made our own,” Bob confirmed.
“We used hemp ropes and braided them ourselves.”
When it comes to daredevil stunts, Bob is also no stranger.
“I have done some amazing heliskiing in deep powder snow, some great white water canoeing on one of the trips which took three weeks from the top of the river to the bottom and a lot of wonderful scuba diving,” Bob explained.
As a family man, Bob agreed to take on this record challenge when his loved ones talked him into it and as competitive as he is, Bob gladly accepted.
“The fun memories are the looks in my family’s eyes when they suggested [the record attempt] and the great pleasure that they showed when it was achieved,” Bob said reminiscing on the experience.
“It is fun to show grandchildren and others that you can still do stuff no matter how old you are.”
The 2019 event took place in Ontario, Canada on Bella Lake where Bob’s family cheered him on from the sidelines while witnessing history in the making.
Bob’s son, Blake Hutcheson, was just one of the many proud family members in attendance who admires his father for his immense love of family, eternal optimism, enthusiasm, and his ability to make anyone who interacts with him feel special in his eyes.
“Oh, and did I mention his undying athleticism… as demonstrated by his snow skiing and waterskiing prowess?” Blake added.
When asked what the easiest and most challenging parts of the record experience were, Bob explained, “the easiest part was getting out of the water afterwards and the most challenging part was thinking about it beforehand with the fear of failure even though I was sure that I could do it.”
Luckily, the fear of failure did not stand in Bob’s way toward become a record-breaking title holder and rather only invigorated him further, even despite a recent cancer diagnosis.
“Becoming a Guinness World Records [title holder] has made me realize how lucky I am to be alive at my age and have friends and a family that will encourage me and help me to participate,” Bob stated.
His son shared a similar sentiment post-record achievement noting that his father has been an athlete and an outdoorsman his entire life and that “this award is a fitting tribute to those characteristics of a lifetime, among his many other great attributes!”
“He has earned it and it is so fun to see the world recognize these accomplishments!”