Diana Nyad, 64, gained her name to fame last year when she became the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without the aid of a shark cage, or any other assistance.
Now, Nyad is going to take on a new endeavor, and try her hand at dancing. That’s right … Diana has joined the season 18 cast members of Dancing With The Stars! She will be joining her partner Henry Byalikov on the dance floor in hopes of obtaining the famous mirror ball trophy.
Byalikov has quite an impressive dancing resume, as he has appeared in Australia’s So You Think You Can Dance, Strictly Dancing and Dancing With the Stars. He also appeared in the hit film The Great Gatsby as a dancer.
Excited to say Diana Nyad @DianaNyad is my partner for #Season18 #DWTS #GMA #GoodMorningAmerica @GMA @DancingABC http://t.co/Gf1eW8e9am
— Henry Byalikov (@HenryByalikov) March 4, 2014
Nyad won over the hearts of Americans in 2013 when she finally reached her goal that she had attempted 4 previous times, of swimming from Havana to Key West, a total of 110 miles. It was an amazing journey, that many people figured she could not conquer, especially at her age. However, thousands of people lined the beach of Key West, awaiting Nyad’s arrival.
“They’re not people reading a sports page every day,” she said. “Those are human beings who want to witness the living out of that message, never, ever give up. And find a way. … And my age, they’re looking at me as a baby boomer, saying life is not over at this age by any means. So I’m more of, shall we say, human spirit story than I am a sports story.”
My Aussie partner @HenryByalikov on #DWTS @dancingABC..I hit the jackpot with Henry…phenomenal dancer & teacher pic.twitter.com/eAXzpCoisy
— Diana Nyad (@diananyad) March 4, 2014
Below is the complete cast list for this season:
Danica McKellar and Val Chmerkovskiy
Cody Simpson and Witney Carson
Billy Dee Williams and Emma Slater
Diana Nyad Henry Byalikov
NeNe Leakes and Tony Dovolani
James Maslow and Peta Murgatroyd
Sean Avery and Karina Smirnoff
Drew Carey and Cheryl Burke
Candace Cameron Bure and Mark Ballas
Charlie White and Sharna Burgess
Meryl Davis and Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Amy Purdy and Derek Hough
Image via Twitter