Veterans kayaking their way to relaxation

KAYAK1C. Robert Gonzalez/Foghorn 

Travis Matthews (bottom left) kayaks with other veterans right off Fortuna Bay in Flour Bluff. The Heroes on the Water, a nonprofit organization, helps veterans reintegrate back into civilian life.

Heroes on the Water is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to “help warriors relax, rehabilitate and reintegrate through kayak fishing and the outdoors.” The organization was established in 2007 and veterans from all United States military branches are welcome to participate.

The idea of the program is exactly what they say in their mission statement and they put strong emphasis on giving veterans the chance to decompress from the stresses associated with combat. They take the veteran into consideration foremost by ensuring they receive basic kayak fishing and paddling instruction instead of just simply launching them off into the water.

Multiple volunteers also join in on the event and help make the experience as enjoyable and relaxing as possible for the veteran.

One beneficial feature about the program is that it is a long-term activity. It’s designed to be an enjoyable therapy and not a one-time deal. The Coastal Bend chapter here in Corpus Christi has regular scheduled monthly trips. The next scheduled event is being held at The Nature Conservancy located on Mustang Island on Oct. 24. Anyone is welcome to volunteer and all veterans are welcome to participate.

If you would like more information or would like to be a part of the healing process, contact Heroes on the Water by emailing coastalbend@heroesonthewater.org.

C. Robert Gonzalez

Charles Robert Gonzalez is a featured columnist/reporter for the Del Mar College Foghorn. He has been working on staff since Spring 2015. You can contact Charles via e-mail at cgonzalez@foghornnews.com.

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