Why I Am A NAUI Green Diver
(from a recent article) The crippling affects of more than 40 years, Dave St. Martin’s disease was a story of pain and limited mobility, that started wheel chair bound. “It affected every aspect of my life,” Dave explained. “I was in the mindset that was it for me.” Until one day sitting on his couch recovering from multi-joint replacement surgery Dave recalls “I was sitting there and I just realized, there has to be something more than this.”
That was when Dave decided to turn his life of “disability” into “ability” and got involved with outdoor sports. Through internet searching Dave discovered organizations that help people with disabilities such as Northeast Passage in New Hampshire (www.nepassage.org) enjoy outdoor sports and since then Dave has spent the last two years enjoying sailing, kayaking, and water skiing.
In 2013 Dave applied for and was awarded the Hugh Fletcher Memorial Training grant that assists people with adaptive needs to scuba dive, sponsored yearly through Women Divers Hall of Fame (www.wdhof.org). The training grant provides funds for the scuba training and equipment in memory of Hugh Fletcher, a former disabled scuba diver. With the scholarship award Dave then looked for a qualified scuba organization. Dave found Scuba Made Easy in Jamestown RI (www.scubamadeeasy.org), a training organization that specializes in teaching people with adaptive needs. Scuba Made Easy is comprised of a course director, instructor trainer and technical instructors certified through NAUI, with specialized training from Handicap Scuba Association (www.HSAscuba.com ), and volunteering with wounded warriors since 2003.
Dave earned his NAUI scuba certification and now enjoys scuba diving on fun dives with Scuba Made Easy discovering what creatures live underwater. Dave has mentioned that an added bonus after his scuba diving adventure is that he experiences less pain and increased flexibility due to his weightless movement underwater. Dave is sincere when he states that, “I just want to show people who think they can’t do something that if they reach out, they will find that there’s help to accomplish everything they want in life.” So there is adventure out there ready for you! When are you going to “reach out”?