Clearwater Beach Fitness Event Benefits Veterans
The event benefits Companions for Heroes, a nonprofit organization that works to save shelter dogs and cats by pairing them with American heroes who are dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder and other combat-related stresses.
CLEARWATER BEACH – This Veterans’ Day weekend Clearwater Beach will play host to a unique, adrenaline driven, non-stop action competition that’s never been seen before in the Tampa Bay area.
The 2016 11th Warrior competition will take place Saturday (Nov.12), with activities starting at 7:30 a.m. and lasting throughout the day and evening. Wounded veterans, professional athletes and fitness enthusiasts will work out together and compete while raising money for Companions for Heroes, a nonprofit organization that works to save shelter dogs and cats by pairing them with American heroes who are dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder and other combat-related stresses.
The event will kick-off with a parachute jump over bright and beautiful Clearwater Beach followed by guest speakers. Veterans, athletes and fitness enthusiasts will then begin to demonstrate their skills in different heats. There will also be a K-9 demonstration by the Clearwater Police Department and a SEALFIT Demo with visitors, giving people a “hands-on” feel as what it’s like to train as a Navy SEAL.
Starting at 6 p.m. there will be a Rush Club competition, which is an in-your-face, one-on-one battle between veterans, athletes, rookies and fitness pros. The event is sometimes described as CrossFit meets UFC, without fighting or contact. Instead participants go head-to-head in a hardcore, heart-pounding, endurance testing, arena match to see who is the strongest. To learn more and see what Rush Club is all about, visit rushclubnation.com.
This year’s event will pay tribute to fallen U.S. Navy Seal (Seal Team 6), Jason Freiwald who was killed in action on Sept. 11, 2008. His wife, daughter, younger brother (also a Navy Seal) and parents will be attending the weekend’s events. To honor him, event organizers have also designed a “HERO WOD” (Workout of the Day) that will feature a swim to honor all Navy Seals, past, present and future.
David Sharpe, a U.S. Air Force Security Forces veteran, founded Companions for Heroes in 2009. Sharpe was diagnosed with PTSD and depression eight years after serving. Not understanding what he was experiencing, Sharpe twice put a loaded gun in his mouth to end his suffering. Both times, his adopted rescue dog, Cheyenne, saved his life; once by licking his ear, and the other time by her presence alone.
“My shelter dog is the sole reason I am here today,” Sharpe said. “Furthermore, my dog has allowed me to grow close relationships with my family and friends. I believe other veterans can benefit from the same type of companionship.”
Most of the wounded veterans competing in the 11th Warrior/Rush Club competition have similar stories. They have been suicidal, struggled, and continue to struggle with the stress that comes from serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.
For information about the 11th Warrior, go to 11thwarrior.com.
11th Warrior | Clearwater Beach | Companions for Heroes | Veterans Day | TB Reporter
#11thWarrior #ClearwaterBeach #CompanionsforHeroes #VeteransDay #TBReporter