by JENNIFER FRAKES

Sharing the View

For the Szalkiewicz family, their quiet local life is complemented by global adventures. The family savors the Carlsbad beaches as much as climbing the highest summits and providing humanitarian aid across the world.

Parents Kym and Joe moved to Carlsbad in 1996. Kym, who grew up in Carlsbad, serves as the event coordinator for the Carlsbad Educational Foundation. Joe, an Escondido native, is the owner and CEO of YellowLine Digital, a social media management company.

The family adventures began in 2008, when their son Joey, 10 years old at the time, wanted to climb Mt. Whitney. Joe tried to talk his son out of the idea, but Joey was committed. They summited Mt. Whitney that year, and Joey’s bigger dream was born – climbing the Seven Summits, the highest peak on each continent. To date, the father-son team have completed four of the summits. Brittany joined the climb in Kilimanjaro, becoming the youngest female (age 10) to summit the mountain at that time.


Parents: Joe and Kym
Children: Joey, Brittany, and four-legged kids Rocky and Bear
Community: Carlsbad
Hometowns: Joe – Escondido; Kym – Carlsbad
Occupations: Joe – CEO; Kym – event coordinator for CEF
Favorite Places in Carlsbad: Calavera Mountain, Lola’s 7-Up Market & Deli, Prontos’ Gourmet Market, Cafe Elysa, and Vigilucci’s
Website: www.sharetheview.org


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In conjunction with their climbs, the family has started Share the View, a nonprofit providing eyeglasses for people in the surrounding mountain villages. “Joey’s favorite part of the climb was the view and he couldn’t enjoy those views if his glasses were not available to him,” Kym explained. Now every summit effort is matched by the effort to raise funds and coordinate aid. “We work with Vision Spring, a company that makes frames and lenses that helps us organize an optometrist,” Kym said. “Then we help in the village with the exams and getting the word out to those in need of glasses. In Argentina, we had buses that brought in hundreds of people from outlying villages.” Share the View has provided over 6,500 pairs of eyeglasses.

Today, Joey attends UC Santa Barbara. He is an avid hiker and mountaineer who also loves to fish and surf. Brittany, two years younger, competes in equestrian competitions. She loves to sing, play volleyball, and go to the beach with friends.

When they are not mountaineering or volunteering, the Szalkiewicz family leads a quieter life around Carlsbad, including Sunday mass at St. Patrick’s Church and having friends over to the house. “We love living in Carlsbad and all that it has to offer. We love the beach, whether going in the water or walking along the seawall or taking electric bikes down the coast for breakfast,” Kym shared.