Mares, SSI and the Dive Pirates Foundation have recently joined together their passion for diving and helping disabled veterans.
We are proud to help Matthew, an incredible individual, start a new “underwater life”
Please read Matthew’s story:
Retired Specialist Matthew Pundyk, US Army
Over Memorial Day Weekend, 2012, Specialist Matthew Pundyk stepped on an IED while serving in Afghanistan. What followed was a string of surgeries to amputate his left leg, remove shrapnel from his right leg and rebuild as much of his ear as possible; though the loss of hearing was permanent. Over Memorial Day weekend, 2014, Matthew received his total dive system from SSI/Mares and spent the weekend learning to SCUBA dive with the Dive Pirates Foundation. Two weeks later he tried out his new gear and training in the Cayman Islands on the foundation’s annual trip that gives back to men and women who have served in the military. Energized by his new ability and training, as well as the network of people he now knows across the country to dive with, Matthew plans to meet up with local divers in his hometown of New Braunfels, for a river cleanup and a reason to get wet. Matthew exemplifies the mission of SSI/Mares to not only give back to injured military with this very mobile sport but also to outfit a diver with a total dive system and proper training to encourage safe and enjoyable diving for years to come.”