N.A.S. Thru T.R.P.
My phone rings and it is a fellow veteran and Tactical Reintegration Project (TRP) member. He says “Do you want to be part of a cutting-edge pilot program which is the first of its kind in the New England Area? It will involve classroom and ocean training to explore uncharted wrecks and document them for worldwide Maritime mapping and use. I think it may be a little too cool for you though” as he laughs. I simply said “Challenge accepted. Send me the info.” That phone call began a new chapter in my life that is continuing to be written. TRP, East Coast Divers, Bridgewater State University, under the Nautical Archaeology Society, launched a program that has instilled in me a higher purpose, deeper sense of camaraderie, and pride.
To be able to take the skills I have learned as a scuba diver and apply them for the greater good of maritime mapping and underwater archaeology has been a mission of higher purpose. That is something that I was missing for many years. It is reinvigorating to focus on something and have an end objective. The work we put in now will open new dive sites, help understand the past of many cultures that traveled the New England waters, and may open this life-changing opportunity to future members of TRP. To be a part of it, I am grateful.
Being part of TRP gives me a sense of belonging. It is intensified with the small, highly skilled team that I am grateful to be part of. I will not miss a meeting, or any training, for it would hinder out collective efforts and do not want to let any of them down. It is very similar to peacetime missions in the military. Being the first of its kind, not only enhances the camaraderie, but also the pride.
There has been a level of pride that is truly uplifting. It is great to see and hear people’s enthusiasm when we tell them what some of us TRP veterans are embarking on. For so long, I was missing something that I could take true pride in. This opportunity has provided a positive mission to fill that void. I am extremely grateful and proud to be part of such a skilled, motivated, and caring team.
Our end goal as part of the TRP underwater archaeology team is to be fully self-sufficient. We want fully trained and experienced veterans teaching and certifying future veterans. To be part of this has instilled a higher purpose, deeper sense of camaraderie, and pride that was missing for so many years after transiting out of the military.
Dive Deep for That Inner Peace,