Chicago man jumps into Lake Michigan 365 days in a row

A Chicago man who jumped into Lake Michigan to treat a hangover in June 2020 has now jumped into the lake for 365 consecutive days.

Dan O’Conor took a leap into the water Saturday at Montrose Harbor, marking his 365th consecutive jump into Lake Michigan in what has become his daily routine amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I started jumping in Lake Michigan on June 13 [2020], that was the first day, and the first day I came down here was because I was hungover. And it felt so good I just started doing it every day,” O’Conor told WLS-TV.

O’Conor said he found jumping into the lake was a good way to clear his mind of the world’s ills.

“You know, with everything that was happening, you talk about June, it was the pandemic and the politics and the protests, just all of that, I could come down here and dive in the water and it would just kind of clear it, clear the palette and cleanse the day, start anew,” he said.

O’Conor said the winter months were the most difficult of his routine, due to the frequently that he incurred cuts and scrapes from hacking through the ice to make a large enough hole for him to reach the water.

O’Conor ended up partnering with a local group to raise money for live music venues that took a financial beating from the pandemic.

“I’m a big fan of live music and just wanted to support the local venues so I partnered up with Civl Chicago, the Chicago independent venue league, and just all these small venues that really have been affected by COVID,” he said. “They were the first to close and they’ll be the last to reopen. And so, I thought it was important to give back to the community that has given me so much joy over the years. So I teamed with them and people started donating right away.”