Abrielle Kamara-Kellogg’s State Champ is making a splash!

By Alani Ware and Davia Douglas 

The Beverly/Morgan Park community is full of so many talented and highly awarded youth! Over the last couple of months, BAPA Villager junior writer-Alani Ware,11, has been able to connect with a local swimming Illinois state champion – and classmate — Abrielle Kamara and follow her journey as a selected All-Star for Team Illinois in the annual regional long course meet, “Duel in the Pool,” held May 6 in Westmont. 

According to the tournament’s website, All-Star for Team Illinois showcases the fastest athletes, ages 11 to 16, from three of USA’s highest performing Local Swimming Committees: Illinois, Indiana, and Gulf Swimming.  

Abrielle, a high achieving academic 6th grade student at Kate Starr Kellogg Elementary, began swimming at her local park district in a Mommy & Me swim class at the age of 9 months.  

“Her love for swimming was apparent at the end of that first session of the class,” her mom said. By the age of five, Abrielle was swimming competitively. She later joined the Chicago Wolfpack Aquatic Club, commonly referred to as CWAC.  

In swim season, Abrielle devotes at least five days a week to hour-and-half practices with her CWAC family. During off season, with a series of school sports –namely volleyball and track – keeping her busy, she also does junior lifeguarding as well as various community projects that encourage and promote the under-publicized sport of swimming throughout the city of Chicago. Abrielle’s favorite swimming style is freestyle. She stated her swim hero is African American 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist Simone Manuel, a freestyle swimming specialist from the USA.  

To date Abrielle has over 80 swimming medals, and has traveled to swim meets in Washington D.C., North Carolina, and all of the states surrounding Illinois.   

She has adopted some of her core values around good sportsmanship and said that swimming has motivated her to be great at whatever she does. That was recently showcased when she was selected to participate in a city-wide art fair on behalf of Kellogg. “I am very appreciative of the support of parents, uncles, aunts, cousins, and friends,” Abrielle said in regards to her very demanding interests and the sport of competitive swimming.  

On May 6, fans watched as Abrielle put on her headphones, stretched, tapped her muscles, shook her legs out, and prepared for the long course 50-meter freestyle race at the long awaited “Duel in the Pool” tournament.  

Over the three months observing Abrielle’s competition routine, the support of her family in the bleachers and the athlete’s declaration that her true race was to just to beat her previous times for the course, it was obvious she was confident. Abrielle placed 5th throughout the competition with a final time of 28.89 seconds in the freestyle race and took another step towards her goal of being a future USA Olympian.  

BAPA and the Kellogg School community is so proud of this young athlete and will be continuing to encourage her as she continues to top the score boards throughout the state and country. Good Job Abrielle! 

Stay connected and cheer Abrielle on through her Swimcloud profile and following her instagram @AbzWater.   



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