JMMF Featured in Fleet Reserve Association Today

FRA Today featuring JMMF ocean surf therapy

By Elise M. Howard

Photo: A Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation volunteer instructs veterans during an ocean therapy session. JMMF hosts at least three military ocean therapy sessions per month in San Diego County. Photo courtesy of Andy Dellenbach.

A few years ago, Navy Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Jessica Nhan faced an uncertain future as she began the lengthy medical discharge process. Grappling with post- traumatic stress disorder and depression after
a military sexual trauma, Nhan took a friend’s suggestion to check out the six-week surf therapy clinic being offered at Naval Medical Center San Diego. Nhan described her first day of surfing as nothing short of “freeing.”

“I didn’t have time to worry about my medical board or whether I was going to be staying in the Navy or getting out,” she recalled. “When I’m in the water, it’s about being in the water. It’s like living in the moment. … [Afterward,] I was just all smiles, ear to ear.”

Before she knew it, she was surfing two to three times per week, getting increasingly connected to the military surfing community and seeing the impact extend far beyond her time in the water.

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