Triathlete goes Pacific
Clarks Summit’s Megan Gibbons, a Misercordia student, is heading to Hawaii this weekend to compete in the Ironman World Championship.
“Ever since I learned what an Ironman was, I knew I wanted to do it,” she said. “The hard work it takes to finish one of these gives me such a strong sense of purpose and accomplishment.”
The triathlon includes a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bicycle ride and a 26.22-mile run, raced without a break.
Megan almost enjoys being scared “by a such big challenge.”
At her first Ironman in Lake Placid, New York, Megan surpassed her goals of just finishing the race and won her age group, qualifying her for the Kona World Championships on Saturday in Hawaii.
Megan trains with a group of triathletes based out of Strive Multisport — one of her competition sponsors — at Harveys Lake. Competing at the world championships is a once in a lifetime opportunity, she said.
Megan is set to receive her doctor in Physical Therapy degree from Misericordia University in December 2019 and is able to travel to Hawaii through the support of her school.
Since Lake Placid, Megan worked to maintain her fitness. She stepped it up on the bike, kept her feel for the water and watched how much she ran, since it wears and tears the body the most.
Megan partly credits her success to the community of athletes she’s met over the last couple months. She’s also been working with a coach to help guide her between the races.
“This trip to Hawaii is the cherry on top of a lot of months of hard work and I need to just smile and have fun with it,” she said.
A 2008 Abington Heights graduate, Megan earned an undergraduate degree from Hamilton College in New York. She is the daughter of Jim Gibbons, a Lackawanna County judge, and the late Kelly Gibbons.
World War II and Korean War Army Veteran Sgt. Matthew Ludovici received additional service and campaign medals.
Ludovici, a lifelong West Scranton resident, received the Army Occupation Medal (Germany), the United Nations Service Medal, the Korean Service Medal with four Bronze Stars and the Distinguished Unit Citation, from state Rep. Marty Flynn, D-113, Scranton, and Lackawanna County Director of Veterans Affairs David Eisele. Ludovici’s daughter got in touch with Flynn’s office about the medals her father was missing and Eisele facilitated finding the awards he hadn’t received.