Provided by Patriot Scuba
The First Annual Veterans Day Honor Dive will recognize the brave men and women of United States Armed Forces through diving and camaraderie with fellow soldiers and sailors. The event will celebrate the strong connection between military heroes and the dive community – both locally and across the nation. Participants will take part in an underwater cleanup of the quarry and Dive Against Debris® survey.
The dive is hosted by Patriot Scuba, a PADI® Five Star Instructor Development Center in Occoquan. Active duty military personnel, veterans and others who wish to celebrate the United States Armed Forces are invited to join the event.
An estimated 60 divers are expected to participate throughout the day, diving in smaller group sessions to accommodate social distancing best practices. The event will be led by a team of veterans from Patriot Scuba, including Jeff Currer, Captain, U.S. Navy (Ret), PADI Course Director and owner of Patriot Scuba, Dave Wilemon, Lieutenant Colonel, United States Marine Corps (Ret) and PADI Master Instructor, and Bob Taradash, Colonel, U.S. Army (Ret), PADI Instructor and executive director of the non-profit Patriots for Disabled Divers. Founded by Currer and his wife Merial, Patriots for Disabled Divers offers therapeutic scuba training and experiences to people with disabilities through affiliate PADI Dive Centers in eleven states.
“The Patriot Scuba vision of the value of a Veterans Day Honor Dive is to recognize our veterans, not only for their service to our country, but also to recognize what scuba diving does for them and what they’ve done to give back to scuba diving,” says Currer. “As a 33-year veteran myself, I know that the average veteran is coming from a life of competence and passion. In so many cases we see where the therapeutic nature of scuba diving has restored that competence and passion to our injured vets, and their passion has transformed their mission from protecting a country to protecting the ocean planet. Veterans have given so much for country and demonstrate that when they become scuba divers, it is in their nature to become torchbearers for ocean health and give back to their local communities and waters.”
“The PADI organization salutes active-duty military personnel and veterans across the globe along with the many PADI Members who offer dive programs to support them. In addition to the confidence building and life changing aspects training as a PADI diver offers, diving can also heal,” says Drew Richardson, President and CEO of PADI Worldwide. “This Veterans Day, we take pause to honor and thank the men and women, past and present, who have served and sacrificed so much for all of us.”
The dive will be held Wednesday, Nov. 11 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., weather permitting, at Rappahannock Quarry in Fredericksburg. To accommodate social distancing measures, the quarry has been reserved exclusively for this event.
For more information, visit patriotscuba.com.