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Old 27-07-2011, 11:31   #1
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Sailing for Veterans

As a combat veteran, I have seen many close friends and aquaintances seek help either mentally or physically. It just seems that they are usually in the form of surfing,hiking, hunting, fishing or some for of animal like horseback riding that helps them with day to day struggles or a physical setback. My question is how come sailing hasnt played a role ? Im sure maybe in small numbers but the majority of foundations are all for the previously stated. I was thinking of volunteering my time and teaching veterans how to sail and if they didnt have an interest in truly learning to skipper their own boat, just a leisurely sail might help them in a small way. Any comments or suggestions? I know in my area there isnt much in the therapy department besides counseling and medications that the VA doctors love to prescribe. These people put their lives on the line so we are able to sail whenever we feel the urge, I think it would be nice to give them a taste of what we all love. It seems all the sailing clinics to help them are far from my location so getting something a little closer to home would be good I think.
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Old 27-07-2011, 17:42   #2
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

You have great intentions! Bless you. I know of the "Shake a Leg" Foundation and Wounded Warriors, plus there must be more.

I have a davit on my dock with a 12 volt hoist so I can load persons from their wheelchair into one of my boats. I use a heavy duty mesh sling that fits under the person, then it is attached to a spreader bar by stainless steel rigging cable. I tried it first as it is mine, I weigh 240 pounds and it worked perfectly.

I am not confined to a wheelchair, but have bilateral vestibular dysfunction, no balance, otherwise excellent condition for a 73 year old vet. Whenever I start feeling poorly, I take a physically challenged person fishing or sailing.

I live in a military town, Pensacola, FL, so it is easy to hook up. You may also check with the local Veterans Administration office.

Semper Fi,
Tom
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Old 28-07-2011, 06:14   #3
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

Im surprised there is no more responses to my post. Thank you for your response and as of right now I could only find a handful of foundations about the above stated.
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Old 29-07-2011, 21:36   #4
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

There is an organization in Annapolis which takes vets on the water, Vet's On The Bay.
Currently I am trying to get out on the water, but I am waiting for the temperature to drop a little. It's just to hot to do much.
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Old 30-07-2011, 00:00   #5
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

FWIW,

The 'Wounded Warrior' barracks on LeJenue was right up the road from the marina. When I was commodore we took lots of our brothers out to sail on race day... and pretty much anyone who came down to the docks had a ride.

I have taken a LOT of folks for their first sail... even guys with TBI who could not stand or concentrate... every single person had a great time and zero problems.

Based on their level of comfort, some learned to steer, others might trim the jib and others would learn to sail the boat.

Good stuff man, and good on you.
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Old 30-07-2011, 07:45   #6
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

For myself I am trying to post 3X5 cards with my request to go out on the water as a disabled veteran around the Annapolis area. So far not too many posted and not much if a response.
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Old 30-07-2011, 08:18   #7
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

Quote:
Originally Posted by E.L.Green View Post
As a combat veteran, I have seen many close friends and aquaintances seek help either mentally or physically. It just seems that they are usually in the form of surfing,hiking, hunting, fishing or some for of animal like horseback riding that helps them with day to day struggles or a physical setback. My question is how come sailing hasnt played a role ? Im sure maybe in small numbers but the majority of foundations are all for the previously stated. I was thinking of volunteering my time and teaching veterans how to sail and if they didnt have an interest in truly learning to skipper their own boat, just a leisurely sail might help them in a small way. Any comments or suggestions? I know in my area there isnt much in the therapy department besides counseling and medications that the VA doctors love to prescribe. These people put their lives on the line so we are able to sail whenever we feel the urge, I think it would be nice to give them a taste of what we all love. It seems all the sailing clinics to help them are far from my location so getting something a little closer to home would be good I think.
Way to go ..Its people like you that will make a differance..the EAA has a program called "young eagles" that intro. kids to aviation,I think that a similar program involving vets would be a great idea. You would think that they should be "Entited" to such things,but most folks take VETS for granted... thanks for your serves! Long live the free world and the men and women that make it happen..where ever they are from.DVC
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Old 18-09-2011, 10:57   #8
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

What a great idea! Good on you for thinking of it. My husband and I are both "someday, wannabe liveaboards" who are firmly on the hard for now but, with both of us having been to Afghanistan, we are very interested in this idea and will look around to see if there's anything similar up here in Canada with which we can help in some way.

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Old 21-09-2011, 09:55   #9
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Re: Sailing for Veterans

I'm sitting here on my boat this morning, I'm 100% disabled Vietnam Vet and I'm thanking my lucky stars that I'm able to be here! I was thinking about getting intouch with the local Vet Center and getting something like this started. I can always use a couple of extra hands and I know what sailing has done for me - it's about the best therapy there is right in there with riding horses. My horses were the best phyciatrists I ever spent time with. I wish I could take them sailing with me!
I would think that working with a Vet center, VFW or American Legion post would be a good way to go on this. I am a service officer as well and a member of >>FORWARD>> a grass roots Veteran self help group. We do VA and SSD claims for those who qualify.
Anyway, I cant wait to get started!
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Old 22-09-2011, 18:54   #10
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I am taking my family to Gulf Shores 1st wk of Oct. They have never even seen the Gulf, & because of my spinal cord injury & fighting with VA over rating decisions, this is our 1st vacation in over 6 yrs. I was wondering if anyone knew of a charter fishing boat, guide or someone who can give discount to a vet. And, while I am an incomplete quad, I can get on & off a boat usually without too much difficulty. I do it here in TN on my bass boat I got from an uncle. Anyway, any info would be greatly appreciated. The only reason we got this vacation is cause my parents are taking us. Our oldest grads this yr, & we wanted a fam vac before that. So thanks to all help.
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