Under a sun kissed day in the Florida Keys, several wounded military personnel along with supporters and caretakers got a chance to interact with dolphins during the completion of a cycling event this weekend.
The soldiers arrived at Marathon’s Dolphin Research Center on Sunday and shared kisses, high fives and flipper shakes with the animals.
"The dolphins are really funny, and they’re a lot like people," said soldier James Smith, an Army specialist who suffered a traumatic brain injury during his deployment to Iraq. "Just imitating what the dolphins do, that was fun, because they do whatever you did, so that was fun to see all the stuff that they're trained to do."
The day in the water was one of the final events to conclude a Solider Ride that started Friday in Miami and ended this weekend in Key West. Many of the veterans, who lost on or more limbs in battle, used bikes with special equipment to help them participate in the event.
The ride was organized by the Wounded Warriors Project, a group designed to promote awareness of the sacrifices made by military members and raise funds to help those who have suffered major injuries along with their families.