Kids’ triathlon program by family of Newtown victim expands

WATERBURY — A children’s triathlon program created by the Connecticut family of a Sandy Hook shooting victim is expanding.

A ceremony is scheduled Thursday in Waterbury to sign a formal agreement that will allow for 20 Race4Chase Youth triathlon programs in Connecticut, Rhode Island and South Carolina next summer.

The parents of 7-year-old Chase Kowalski founded the program. The boy had competed in his first youth triathlon — a 20-yard swim, half-mile bike ride and third-of-a-mile run — just months before he was killed along with 25 others at Sandy Hook Elementary school in December 2012.

The free day camps expanded to eight sites in 2015 and 14 last year, including one in Fort Mill, South Carolina. Counselors teach the campers how to swim, ride a bike and the basics of running.