Amy Van Dyken

Amy Van Dyken is a six-time Olympic gold medalist in competitive swimming – the first American woman to achieve this accomplishment. Amy began swimming as a way to strengthen her lungs while after being diagnosed with severe asthma during childhood. She went on to win four of her six gold medals at the 1996 Summer Olympics where she won the 50-meter freestyle, 100-meter butterfly, 4?100-meter freestyle relay, and 4?100-meter medley relay. She was also named Swimming World's American World Swimmer of the Year in 1995 and 1996.

On June 6, 2014, Amy was out riding with her husband when she flew over the vehicle and down an embankment. Her ATV toppled after her and landed on her back, severing her spine. The injury was so close to her aorta that the surgeon had to move in nanometers, but she survived as a T12 paraplegic.  

During her months in rehabilitation in Colorado, Amy continued to build “Amy’s Army”—what she calls her group of supporters—through chronicling her daily challenges in recovery via Twitter and Instagram. The mission of Amy Van Dyken Foundation and “Amy’s Army” is to provide essential medical equipment for people with spinal cord injuries who cannot afford these necessities. Learn more at


Watch Amy's video

CPN Champion Amy Van Dyken

Six-time Olympic gold medalist shares her thoughts about the $10 million CPN Challenge

Published Date: 12/18/2014