La Jolla Shores hosts Summer Sports Clinic for injured veterans

Penny ‘The Penguin’ Parker, a Navy hospital worker said, ‘There are no words for what I experienced here.’
Penny ‘The Penguin’ Parker, a Navy hospital worker said, ‘There are no words for what I experienced here.’

By Ashley Mackin

White tents popped up at La Jolla Shores last week as part of the Summer Sports Clinic presented by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA).

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Marine crystal stokes surfs like a pro!

The clinic was sponsored by Surf Diva so that injured veterans could be treated to a day at the beach. Some veterans went surfing, assisted by Surf Diva instructors and volunteers, many of whom were veterans themselves.

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Penny ‘The Penguin’ Parker, a Navy hospital worker said, ‘There are no words for what I experienced here.’

Surf Diva provided adaptive equipment, such as surfboards with handles, for those who must surf lying down. Although some of the vets had difficulty walking, they enjoyed surfing on their stomachs nonetheless.

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Iraq War veteran Gordon ‘Gordy’ Ewell and Vietnam War veteran Dave Aitken show off their military tattoos.

The Summer Sports Clinic is part of a national effort to provide outdoor activities that complement the therapies recently injured vets undergo. “Its fundamental purpose is to provide early intervention for veterans battling back from injury, not only to strengthen their bodies, but to overcome and improve their overall being and self-worth,” the VA’s website states.

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Bob Barker enjoys his run.
   
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