Wake for Warriors is a 501 (C) 3 non-profit founded in 2012 by veterans to serve veterans. Our focus has, and always will be, on connecting with our riders. We share in their struggles and celebrate victories on and off the water. WFW is guided by combat veterans that understand the value of camaraderie without the hype, marketing or fanfare.
In June of 2012 while deployed in Afghanistan, Stefan and his platoon were clearing improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Suddenly, two IEDs exploded and Stefan rushed to aid those injured by the blast. While carrying an injured soldier to a MEDEVAC helicopter, Stefan was struck by a third explosion. He lost both of his legs immediately. He spent the following two years learning to walk again in prosthetics. It hasn't stop him from the Boston Marathon every year since 2016.
Stefan has been a part of the Wake for Warriors family since March of 2016. Over the years, Stefan has been a guiding force in the way our events are run and how we care for our riders. Stefan has competed in the Nautique Wakesurf series since it's inception in 2018 and is the current Wakesurf Masters Adaptive sitting champion.
After sustaining injuries from a combat training exercise in 2016, Tyler was left paralyzed from the chest down. He spent 5 months hospitalized and in rehabilitation and struggled accepting his new way of life. Tyler participated in his first WFW event in 2018. "The independence, comradery, and freedom I felt after that weekend changed my life. I wanted to share that experience with other people facing similar challenges.
Tyler has coached and driven boats at several events. He also has competed in the Nautique Wakesurf Nationals and The Nautique Wakesurf Masters competitions
On April 6, 2011, Tony was on his second deployment when he lost both of his legs and sustained severe injuries to his right arm after a bomb exploded in Southern Afghanistan, the day after the birth of his first child. Tony was on a mission to clear abandoned compounds when he saw wires indicative of an improvised explosive device (IED) and started moving his teammates out of the area.
Tony was the first Wake for Warriors rider in 2013 and is instrumental in creating the core values and principals that guide our organization today.
Jodi is a pro wakesurfer for Nautique Boats and Hyperlite boards. 2021 will mark year 6 of her being a part of WFW. Jodi’s love for the sport goes way beyond her career and she has dedicated herself to supporting Wake for Warriors. Coaching, socializing and seeing the transformation of every participant truly completes her passion.
LaTreva has been a part of the Wake for Warriors leadership team since 2016. Her role as Treasurer continues to help Wake for Warriors manage the financial resources required to support this critical effort on behalf of the veterans we serve. LaTreva has her Masters in Accounting and for the last fifteen years has been teaching Accounting at the university level. Her passion for watersports started when she was five and continues to this day. LaTreva is also an avid runner and has completed multiple marathons including the Disney Dopey.
Chris began his 22-year United States Navy career as a P-3C Pilot/Mission Commander aboard NAS Barbers Point, Hawaii. During his three overseas deployments, he conducted post-Desert Storm operations and extensive anti-submarine/anti-surface warfare missions around the globe. He also spent extensive time with DESRON 7 aboard the USS Constellation (CV-64), over 15 years as a Navy Instructor Pilot on various Navy aircraft and finished his career as the Commanding Officer of Operational Support Unit 0355 in Orlando, Florida.
Chris brings his leadership and vision to the Wake for Warriors board
Bill has been a iconic figure at Wake for Warriors events for over 5 years. Bill has been in the watersports industry for over 30 years and was hooked when he witnessed the transformation of the participant veterans over the course of 3 days. Bill is an amazing teacher, coach, mentor, all around good guy. He also rocks an extensive and impressive suspenders collection.
Wake for Warriors was founded in 2012 by Dave (LtCol. US Marines). Dave served for over 28 years of active and reserve service and flew over 250 combat missions in the AH-1W.
As a water sports enthusiast, Dave experienced the healing properties of water and knew how it could help veterans returning from war. Thanks to the love and support of friends and family, 2021 marks 9 years of spreading the shred in service to our veteran community.