Honoring a Veteran Biography Archives - Waves Project

Honoring a Veteran Biography

“I was compelled to share my truth”

After seeing our Social Media post about our accomplishments in 2021, U.S. Marine Corps veteran and WAVES Project diver, Rafael Monroy contacted WAVES Project to share his feelings and the impact of our program on his life. “I was compelled to share my truth about the chart that showed 392 veterans lives that were positively…

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2021 in Review

After the challenges of the previous year, 2021 brought with it new opportunities & growth. The following summary highlights our training and organizational accomplishments. In January we kicked off the year inspecting and servicing all of our SCUBA training gear. All regulators, computers & buoyancy compensating device (BCD) were inspected and serviced by WAVES staff,…

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Wounded veterans experience therapeutic benefits of diving while helping Dry Tortugas National Park

KEY WEST, Fla. – Dry Tortugas National Park hosted volunteer divers from the Wounded American Veterans Experience Scuba (WAVES) Project who spent a week helping the coral reef ecosystem at the park and in return received therapy, healing and relief from their service-connected disabilities. Seven veterans traveled to the remote Dry Tortugas archipelago, from Oct.…

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WAVES Project Women Veterans Volunteer at Biscayne National Park

Five female veterans of the US Armed Services joined the National Park Service for a week of removing marine debris from Biscayne National Park, July 5-11, 2021. The veterans were sponsored by the Wounded American Veterans Experience SCUBA (WAVES Project), non-profit established to provide opportunities for veterans with service-connected disabilities and their families to experience…

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Run for Remembrance 9/11/2021

WAVES Project Veteran Jeff Houser This September 11th marks the 20th anniversary of a day that changed so many lives. In an effort to raise funds for the WAVES Project, a non-profit organization, I’m running the Surf City Half Marathon in remembrance of all those that lost their lives that day and the many years…

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Bonnie R. Casler

March is Women’s History Month and WAVES Project is honored to spotlight one of our “Women of WAVES” trailblazers.  Bonnie Casler, MSG, (Ret) joined the Army in 1977 after graduating from college with a degree in Education.  She was the last graduating class of WAC (Women Army Corps), which was dissolved as the Army became…

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Waco Merchant

One of the people who began working with the WAVES Project in the early days is Waco Merchant – US Marine Corps veteran and an SSI Assistant Instructor. Waco is also a veteran who received injuries to his body while serving, including cracked vertebrae and injuries to his knee and shoulder resulting in several surgeries.…

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Sergio Velasquez

Sergio and wife Mirlein in Iraq

Sergio Velasquez enlisted in the US Marine Corp in 1997 where he met his wife Mirlein who also served. They are both retired and have built a beautiful life together. He says the WAVES Project gave him hope that there were other forms of help than therapy and taking medication.

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Kristopher Moorehead

Kristopher Moorehead joined the US Coast Guard in 2006 – his grandfather served in Vietnam and was a big influence on him, Kris says he is the main reason he wanted to serve. He served for 7 1/2 years defending our coast and was stationed all around the United States and US territories . He…

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Richard Silva

In 2000 at the age of 28, Richard approached his wife about his need to change up life a little. “I had a great deal of pride and a deep sense of patriotism and knew it was time for a change”.

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Patrick Runion

Patrick served in the Marine Corp for 4 years completing several deployments to Afghanistan. Many members of his family have served, including his grandfather who served during WWII. Now an active diver and WAVES Project Volunteer.

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WAVES Chaplain, Sid Siez

Sid Siez joins the volunteer staff of veterans with the WAVES Project. In addition to offering a friendly ear, Sid writes a monthly column for the WAVES Website Blog offering practical tips on subjects like resolving conflict and setting meaningful goals.

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Daniel Gililland

Danny served in the U.S. Army, as a 19K Armor Crewman where he was a tank driver, loader, gunner, tank commander and designated marksman.

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Michael Atkins

Michael Atkins joined the US Coast Guard in 1992 out of a desire to serve our country. He says he chose the Coast Guard because of their mission. After serving 20 years and 2 months he was medically retired.

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Juan Ramirez

Juan Ramirez is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran who served in two tours of duty in Iraq. He is the first in his family to serve our country in the military. Juan was a quality assurance evaluator and chef, as well as a prison guard and provided security detail for convoys. “My disabilities make it…

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