Advancing National Service

One Woman’s Mission to Give Veterans a Trip to ‘Nature’s Cathedral’

December 15, 2013
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One Woman’s Mission to Give Veterans a Trip to ‘Nature’s Cathedral’
An injured U.S. serviceman gazes upon a rainbow following an afternoon thunderstorm on July 31, 2009 at the Yarmony Lodge near McCoy, Colorado. John Moore/Getty Images
How a rafting trip can heal the wounds of war.

78-year-old Pennsylvania resident Margery Hermann wanted to do something to help returning veterans, so she decided to combine her love of rafting with her charitable mission. In 2012, she founded Canyon Heroes, which organizes rafting trips for veterans down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. Hermann believes a seven-day trip into what she calls “Nature’s Cathedral” can provide a healing experience for men and women who’ve served their country. After two successful runs so far, several veterans said the river journey has helped them in ways years of therapy did not.

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