VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Prepping for an upcoming four-mile swim. Former SEAL Ray Care was joined by another former SEAL, Mitch Aguia, to get ready for next week's Navy SEAL Hudson River Swim in New York.
Part of the training, Ray says, is a swim across Virginia Beach's Lake Christopher and back about four times a week, "You work on your breathing and your focus, But I think what the real symbolism of us swimming across this is, every stroke, every breath we take— we're thinking about the veteran."
In addition to prepping for next Saturday's Hudson River swim, which raises funds and awareness for the various challenges facing our military veterans, Ray---also does a push-up challenge on social media to raise money.
"It goes to help veterans on a wide spectrum, disabled veterans, helping with schooling, housing, clothing, sheltering--any aspect of the veteran needs, that's what we do."
And while Ray is extremely proud of his military career as a SEAL, one thing is clear about his current mission, "Yes I was a Navy SEAL, but I love every branch and our goal--"Team Care", that's me, my wife Tricia, my daughter Nyla--our goal is to help every veteran so that we get that number down to zero."
That number Ray and his wife focus on is 22, the estimated number of veterans who commit suicide every day.
Tricia acknowledges, that it's a difficult conversation, "Getting that number down to zero—-we need to talk about it, everybody, like even with Navy SEALS, we see all the glam and all that, but we really don't see how these men and women suffer and what they go through."
For those reasons News 3 is presenting Ray with an Everyday Hero award, along with a $300 Visa gift card from our community partner Southern Bank.
"Oh, this is awesome! Well, thank you so much! I really appreciate it!" Ray said.
For more information on how you can support Ray's efforts to raise awareness and funds for our veterans click here. And for more information on how to support the upcoming Navy SEAL Hudson River Swim click here.