CA woman to attempt record-setting solo row across the Pacific Ocean

Updated: Jan. 28, 2020 at 5:32 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Angela Madsen is a paraplegic and an incredible athlete with a goal that spans an ocean. She plans to row across the Pacific Ocean all by herself.

"Ever since I flew over on a Hawaiian Airlines flight and was looking down at that water, it was like, 'I'm going to row that and I'm going to do it solo,'" she said.

Madsen, 59, will set sail from Los Angeles in April bound for Oahu.

She's planning for 100 days at sea. Her vessel is outfitted with storage and shelter space.

“It has a desalinator. It’s self-righting so it’ll roll back up. It’ll hold about 120 days of dried provisions for one. It’s solar-powered and GPS-navigated,” she said.

Filmmaker Soraya Simi will document the journey for a film on Madsen's life that's due out later this year.

Since the trip will be without assistance, images will need to be captured without a photographer or videographer on board.

"We're figuring out how to rig her boat so that she is an autonomous filmer and it simplifies her triggering the cameras on and off," Simi said.

Madsen's a former Marine, and a mother and grandmother.

A sports-related injury and failed surgery cost her the use of her legs. She once contemplated suicide.

"When I got injured I thought everything was gone and I lost all hope," she said.

Sports and rowing saved her.

She's competed in the Paralympic Games and holds Guinness Book records for rowing the Atlantic and Indian oceans and circumnavigating Great Britain.

"I'm the only paraplegic that does it so far," she said.

If all goes as planned, she’ll be the first paraplegic to row across the Pacific without any help.

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