By Christie L. Chicoine
CS&T Staff Writer

Francis E. Crippen, a member of the U.S. National Swim Team and a 1998 alumnus of Conshohocken Catholic Elementary School, died Saturday, Oct. 23, 2010 during an international swimming competition east of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.

He was 26 years old and a member of St. Matthew Parish in Conshohocken.

Crippen, a professional swimmer, was competing in the FINA (Fédération Internationale de Natation, the international governing body for the sport of swimming) open water, 10-kilometer World Cup Finals as a member of the U.S. National Swim Team. {{more}}

At the time of his death, Crippen was the 10K Open Water Swimming National Champion of the United States and in September had been named the 2010 U.S. Open Water Swimmer of the Year. He also finished fourth in the 10K and third in the 5K, respectively, at this year’s world swimming championship competition July 18 and 20 in Roberval, Quebec, Canada.

Crippen’s funeral Mass is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 30 at St. Matthew Church in Conshohocken, Third and Fayette Streets. Friends are invited to call from 9 a.m. to 10:20 a.m. Oct. 30 at the church.

Interment will follow at Calvary Cemetery in West Conshohocken.

Survivors include his parents, Peter and Patricia (nee Grandizio) Crippen of Conshohocken; three sisters: Madeline, Claire and Teresa Crippen, also of Conshohocken; his maternal grandparents, Francis and Regina (Temple) Grandizio of Drexel Hill; three aunts: Jean Marie (John) Cantrill of Ardmore; Fran (Charles) Gallagher of Philadelphia and Mary Chris (Stephen) Schueren of Gwynedd; as well as numerous cousins.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Fran Crippen Elevation Foundation, c/o Peter Crippen, 301 E. 8th Ave., Conshohocken, Pa. 19428.

A complete obituary will appear in the Nov. 4 issue of The Catholic Standard & Times.

For more information about Crippen’s swimming achievements, visit the web site of U.S.A. Swimming, headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., at

CS&T Staff Writer Christie L. Chicoine may be reached at 215-587-2468 or