The Holmes family in the Palm Beaches area has long been involved in aquatics, beginning with Capt. Lincoln Holmes, a boat builder who came to West Palm Beach in 1895 from Long Island, N.Y.
Shortly thereafter, he established a buoy system to mark a safe swimming area on the Breakers? Hotel beach in Palm Beach. He also constructed the ferryboats that carried passengers from West Palm Beach to Palm Beach prior to bridges being built over the Inland Waterway. The family also has been involved in swimming, water skiing and scuba diving.
In 1934, Lincoln?s son, Henry, won the National Lifeguard Championship at Jones Beach on Long Island. Henry was a high school state swimming champion for a number of years. After his return from World War II in 1945, Henry began a swimming school in West Palm Beach, which provided pickup and delivery service. His daughter, Constance Holmes Frausto, and his niece, Betsy Gersch Raper, continue the tradition today.
Betsy has had her business since the 1980s and is a very highly regarded instructor, not only for teaching children, but also for all phases of adult water safety activities. She is considered a community treasure for her services here. Constance has had her swim school in the Boston area for the past 15 years. She recently moved to Jupiter, Fla., where she opened another swim school to serve the children in the Jupiter Farms community.