Dave Loeffler’s Unprecedented Swim For Ocean Therapy

Dave Loeffler’s Unprecedented Swim For Ocean Therapy

Hello All,

Mike Galloway and I just talked about weather forecasts and rescheduling our swim. Seems like the small windows of lighter winds are closing down and the winds are increasing through the end of September. There are a number of moving targets we are juggling to make this swim happen. First the weather, 2nd is rescheduling access with the Navy, and 3rd finding observers with open dates available. Instead of rushing into something that is not going to give us a good chance of success, we feel it’s best to take a deep breath and be patient.

Mike and I have agreed on a tentative date of October 6th and 7th, with a contingency extension of the 8th (Columbus day).

Dave Loeffler’s Unprecedented Swim For Ocean Therapy
Posted: 08 Sep 2018 05:19 AM PDT


Courtesy of Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation, South Bay, California.

Jimmy Miller was a surfer, teacher, lifeguard, traveler, writer and a surfing ambassador and leader from Los Angeles, California.

In one of his columns for the Beach Reporter, he wrote, “There was great shorepound, as there always used to be, at Fourth Street in Manhattan. I rode my new Boogie Board. It was an evening that may have set the course for the rest of my life. As I waited outside the bodysurfers for a wave that broke a little further out, a glassy left loomed in.

I turned, kicked and started down the face. As soon as I was at the bottom the wave barreled. I was totally inside for the first time in my life, and without even trying, I saw water all around me.

In front of me was a blue hole, with light entering in a perfectly round opening. Time slowed down, and I heard a light Whoooo as the wave’s energy pushed wind out from behind me. Two, maybe three seconds later, I was out of the tube with my mouth agape. It took me a moment to realize what had happened because, at 7 years old, no one had told me that a tube ride was the ultimate feat in riding a wave.”

A 1991 graduate of the University of California Berkeley, he organized the Cal Surf Club. Then in 1998, he founded his own surf company, Pure Surfing Experience where taught surfing, produced local contests, and organized CampSurf, summer day camps in the city of Manhattan Beach as well as week-long camps all over the world.

He also served as a L.A. County lifeguard for 15 years, most of those years in Manhattan Beach where he worked for the Junior Lifeguard Program.

After his passing at the age of 35, his family and friends wanted to honor his legacy and the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation was formed.

The Foundation is dedicated to creating and providing activities and programs to help people with mental and emotional illness benefit from the therapeutic and healing powers of the ocean. Specifically, its focus on Ocean Therapy is to help people learn to love, heal and feel joy from the power of the ocean and the power of loving friends.

Ocean Therapy is an adaptive surfing program to assist individuals – from at-risk youth to wounded warriors – coping with mental and physical illness in accessing the ocean environment. Surfing has long since been a sport associated with freedom and independence and has the ability to support individuals with special needs in increasing their self-esteem and self-confidence.

Dave Loeffler is helping support the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation.

Loeffler, a former Navy SEAL who enlisted in 1985, is a disabled veteran who spent years in military zones throughout the world. On September 17th, he will attempt to swim 21 miles from LCI Point on San Clemente Island to China Point on Catalina Island in an unprecedented channel swim.

Sanctioned by the Santa Barbara Channel Swimming Association, Loeffler’s charity swim is to raise awareness of the sacrifices, challenges and triumphs of America’s disabled veterans.

Due to the remoteness and inaccessibility of San Clemente Island as a military base, this swim has not been attempted before. He estimates the swim may take him 11 hours, but it could be as many as 15 with the low temperatures and dense population of Great White Sharks. “This is exactly why this swim provides a hearty challenge and drama to increase awareness of our cause to promote awareness for disabled veterans and help raise funds for those that are serving our veterans. I am a disabled vet and want to share my passion of feeling closest to nature and to God, when immersed in the world’s open waters.”

Loeffler chose the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation as the beneficiary of the fundraising because of its pioneering Ocean Therapy program that combines adaptive surf lessons and group therapy for those suffering from mental and physical effects of traumatic experiences. The Foundation conducts Ocean Therapy sessions with the Wounded Warrior Battalion-West at Camp Pendleton, California and with veterans from all branches of the military in conjunction with the West Los Angeles Veterans Hospital.

Called The Big Swim, Loeffler will depart King Harbor in Redondo Beach, California at 10 am on September 17th and head directly to San Clemente Island. Loeffler will start at 10 pm and will swim directly to Catalina Island with an anticipated arrival around 10 am on September 18th.

There will be a live feed during the swim. His progress can be tracked here.

For more information on The Big Swim, visit here. To donate, visit here.

Copyright © 2008-2018 by World Open Water Swimming Association
From World Open Water Swimming Association’s Daily News of Open Water Swimming

Jimmy Miller Foundation, LA Kings host vets for day of surfing in Manhattan Beach

Jimmy Miller Foundation, LA Kings host vets for day of surfing in Manhattan Beach

by Ryan McDonald

Rough waters and overhead surf didn’t stop a group of military veterans from throwing themselves into the waves of El Porto this week, thanks to the Jimmy Miller Foundation and an assist from the Los Angeles Kings.

The foundation hosted veterans from the West Los Angeles Veterans Hospital Groups Monday for a morning of ocean therapy. Instructors from Camp Surf provided tips on technique and kept the vets safe, while a pre-surf yoga session from Yoga Glo got everyone warmed up.

The foundation, named for a beloved local lifeguard and surf instructor who lost his life to mental illness in 2004, is devoted to ocean therapy. It has been a pioneer in using surfing to assist veterans and active-duty soldiers deal with the rigors of combat and helping them prepare to return to civilian life. The foundation hosts events throughout the year in the South Bay and at Camp Pendleton in San Diego County.

“The idea that the ocean could heal us was not really talked about at the time,” said Kris Primacio, ocean therapy coordinator for the foundation. “Thirteen years later, we are still thriving.”

Read More

Remembering Ruth Phelps

Remembering Ruth Phelps

The Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation wants to recognize and celebrate the life of an amazing and generous lady, a true South Bay “local”. Ruth Phelps included the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation in her will so we can continue to offer Ocean Therapy our veterans and children groups.

Ruth Phelps was born in Southwest Los Angeles on December 9, 1913, attended El Segundo High School and then graduated from UCLA with a teaching credential for kindergarten and elementary grades. Her eight years of teaching included time at Colton, Redondo Beach and West Los Angeles. In 1979, Ruth retired from a 36-year career with Standard Oil (now Chevron) at the El Segundo Oil Refinery.  Ruth began at Standard Oil as a file clerk, then a secretary and progressed to working vacation relief wherever needed.
Ruth was an avid traveler. She documented her trips to London, Oslo, Banff, Higgins Lake and of course, her beloved Hawaii. She was a volunteer at the Food Pantry at LAX, an active participant at the Westchester Senior Center, and a committed member of Covenant Presbyterian Church. Ruth was a rabid UCLA fan, and she followed all UCLA sports teams. Go Bruins!

We honor Ruth and her generous contribution, and for supporting us as we support our veterans and children. What an awesome legacy! If you would like more information on how to include the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation in your will, please contact us at info@jimmymillerfoundation.org

Camp Pendleton Ocean Therapy Oct 11

jmmf-crew-2016-10

All star cast included Peff Eick, Lt. Col. Steve Mount and 10 Marines, including 3 first timers!
Laughter was the best medicine at this Ocean Therapy session.  See everyone at THE JIMMY on Sunday!

 

andyd

JMMF board member Andy Dellenbach coaches a first timer with guest instructors Brad and Jerry.

kyled

Safety instructor Kyle demonstrates the way to stand on with board with a first time Marine surfer.

Camp Pendleton with Stephan Jenkins

(Here is a new article from GrindTV.com in which Sephan discusses his experience with JMMF)

STEPHAN JENKINS donated time this week to the JIMMY MILLER FOUNDATION at CAMP PENDLETON in SAN DIEGO, where a number of wounded, ill or injured MARINES attached to the WOUNDED WARRIOR BATALLION were hosted. For each “Ocean Therapy” session, there is a discussion about a theme related to trauma and recovery and how it relates to the ocean. After the discussion there is a 90-minute surf session followed by a closing circle. JENKINS spent the morning teaching MARINES how to surf, and in essence sharing his love for a sport that has provided him with so much personal joy over the years.

click here for more images of the day at Camp Pendleton

“Surfing is foundational to my life. Still it doesn’t feel complete until I share it with others,” JENKINS said. “Sharing it with service members who have carried their trauma home and seeing what it does for them completes it for me. There is no place I would have rather spent my birthday.” For more information on “Ocean Therapy” and THE JIMMY MILLER FOUNDATION, check out its official homepage jimmymillerfoundation.org.

THIRD EYE BLIND will release its brand new seven-song album, “We Are Drugs,” this FRIDAY (OCTOBER 7th).  Check out a stream of “Company Of Strangers,” on SOUNDCLOUD.

Complete story on ALLACCESS.COM