By CLIFFORD LYON For City of Eugene Recreation

I participated in the Veteran Sailing Program offered by the City of Eugene Recreation in the summer of 2016. Before I signed up for this program, I’d never done anything in the veteran community. I’d never participated in anything the Eugene Rec offered. These kinds of activities weren’t even on my radar. I’m not on social media and I’d never gone looking for them. I signed up for sailing for the simple reason a fellow Marine asked me to come out and try it. I think the reason I’d never done anything like this is because I felt like I didn’t deserve it. I wasn’t wounded in combat. I came home in one piece. Whenever I would hear about free programs for veterans, I immediately thought about the people on the Wounded Warriors calendars. In my mind, those were the people who earned it. The other reason I was apprehensive was I didn’t like the idea of bobbing around on a boat with a few other veterans talking about the war and complaining about the VA. I’ve never particularly liked the idea of group therapy, so this seemed like a deterrent. Still, I chose to come out and try it, and the only reason was because I have a lot of respect for