Surf’s Up: Fence & Deck Sponsors Warrior Events in South Carolina

While the rest of the Fence & Deck team has been embracing the crisp fall weather, our Founder, Jim Rubush and our voluntary goodwill ambassador, Michelle Rubush headed down to the beach — but for a wonderful occasion! Fence & Deck Connection was honored to sponsor 8 local Veterans from Annapolis-based Warrior Events to participate in the Warrior Surf Foundation’s Surf Therapy program.

Founded by Marine Veteran Andy Manzi in 2015, WSF helps to break the cycle of trauma, reintegration disorder, anxiety, and depression so the body and mind are able to work through residual feelings of discomfort and distress. After his return from deployments in Iraq, Andy found that the unfortunate effects of war and trauma can be counteracted by using the ocean as a healing remedy. This amazing and life-changing experience is available to Veterans and active service members with psychological and/or physical disabilities.

Fence & Deck’s Founder, Jim Rubush met Andy six years ago and we were excited to see his organization take root. This inspired our team to which inspired Jim to send Maryland Veterans to South Carolina for his amazing program. This year, 8 Maryland members of Warrior Events, an organization that provides veterans and their families the opportunity to engage with and become pillars in their community following military service, spent one week in Folly Beach, South Carolina with WSF.

In addition to daily surf lessons, participants also took part in yoga and wellness workshops. By focusing on mindfulness and resiliency, these offerings help guide Veterans into maintaining a healthy lifestyle well after the program ends. Program attendees develop a close bond in this supportive, tight-knit community, sharing stories and experiences with one another — whether it was at dinner cooked up by WSF’s surf instructors or a bonfire on the beach.

Since its beginning, WSF has served over 500 Veterans on the beautiful shores of Folly Beach. Jim and Michelle witnessed firsthand the powerful, life-changing moments experienced by our local veterans. Fence & Deck Connection is proud to provide our local veteran heroes with this opportunity for years to come.

Take a look at the photos of the trip below:

Pictured here is Sparks, a service dog to Jeff, one of the warriors who took part in the WSF program.
WSF Founder Andy Manzi with program with Veterans, Tonia and Ricardo 
Andy is not only the surf master, but the resident chef! Here, warriors enjoyed a delicious meal cooked up by the program’s surf instructors.