Todd Kemery

Corporal Todd joined the marines in 1978 and served in Okinawa, Japan as a helicopter mechanic.  While in California in 1982 he was enjoying the ocean when he was rolled in the surf, causing an incomplete spinal cord injury.

Eric Scot Poehler

Scot served in the Air Force as an aircraft instrument repairman, completing a tour of duty in Vietnam.  After his military service he earned a college degree and became a professional photographer. In 2006 a car accident caused a complete spinal cord injury, resulting in paraplegia. He continues to be very active and participates in…

Benjamin Keechler

Ben served in the United States Army as a helicopter mechanic, serving in one tour to Korea.He continued in the private sector as a mechanic following his service. While on a camping trip with his family he felt poorly and lay down, at which time he started feeling numbness in his hands. By morning he…

Jon Schuetz

Jon fell in love with ocean when he lived in Florida, and always wanted to learn to scuba dive. He did snorkel in the Florida Keys and knew one day he would dive below. In 2007 Jon was in a motorcycle accident that broke four bones in his neck, resulting in quadriplegia.  Jon now works…

Kathryn McCabe

Kathryn suffered a stroke in 2012 and is working hard to regain strength in her right side.  She walks with a cane and enjoys the water. A diver before her stroke, she is working to enjoy this sport again despite her hemiplegia.

Cody Johnson

Cody joined the Marines and spent a year and a half in the infantry before being medically discharged, a problem with his ankles. In 2014 Cody suffered a gunshot wound to his left leg, which had to be amputated. In 2015 he applied to the Dive Pirates Foundation after a friend at the gym told…

Courtney Mazzola

Courtney has been blind since birth, and perceives some movement and light. She lovesocean and can’t wait to feel the open space of underwater. She never even thought about diving until friend and dive pirate Michael Malarsie convinced her to give it a try. Now she can’t wait!

Avery Downing

Avery is an amazing young lady, an accomplished gymnast who fell while practicing on the unevenbars, a fall that caused a spinal cord injury. Now a person with paraplegia, Avery is very independent and drives herself. She loves a challenge and has been looking forward to diving.

Jean Paul Lauren

“JP” served in the United States Air Force in the 1970’s working in intelligence. In 2006 he was injured while skydiving, colliding with an irrigation system while landing in tall grass. He sustained multiple injuries causing paraplegia. Before his accident JP was a PADI certified open water diver and he’s thrilled to have the chance…

Melissa Veale

Melissa works in the Spinal Cord Damage Research Center located at the Bronx VA Medical Center in Bronx, NY. As a teenager Melissa was enjoying a day in the park when she fell from the top of a gazebo. The fall caused a spinal cord injury resulting in paraplegia. She is looking forward to the…