Vietnam Vet Takes Pride in Helping Returning Soldiers Discover SCUBA
Dan Emke served in the US Marines in Vietnam back in the late 1960s. While times and conflicts may have changed, Emke knows how it feels to return to the United States following military service. Earlier this month, Emke together with the SCUBA companies he helps lead (Oceanic and AERIS) took part in a major effort to help severely injured soldiers learn to scuba dive in Bonaire.
“Being a Vietnam veteran myself I am able to contrast my coming home experience with theirs, I know my generation’s experience. I am able to contrast the attitude of the returning Vietnam vet against the current generations,” said Emke, the Director of both Oceanic and AERIS. “The can-do spirit of this group is something people really need to personally experience.”
To read more about this event in detail, click on this link: Bonaire Hosts Severely Injured Members of the US Military
“As Americans, we need to support our troops – both those in the field AND those returning,” Emke says. SCUBA diving provides a great escape and an opportunity for returning soldiers to accomplish new goals and explore the underwater world.
When the opportunity to help these soldiers, who have varying degrees of disabilities, was announced. Emke was able to respond quickly. “I’m pleased to be working for a company that supports this effort. We’re involved by helping supply SCUBA equipment to wounded soldiers and their families. I can’t think of a better way to ‘give back’.”
Oceanic and AERIS are just two of the many sponsors that were part of the event last month on Bonaire where seven severely wounded members of the US military and their families were treated to spectacular SCUBA diving on the popular Caribbean Island.
The SCUBA industry has embraced the concept of teaching challenged military members how to SCUBA dive. Organizations including Wounded Warriors, SUDS and DEMA are all taking part in these efforts.