PEOPLE All-Stars Among Us: Joe Mornini

Earlier this month Major League Baseball, PEOPLE and the Washington Nationals announced the three local finalists for the 2010 “PEOPLE All-Stars Among Us” national campaign, which debuted in 2009 and recognizes individuals who are serving their community in extraordinary ways.


The Nationals finalists are Mark Bergel of Bethesda, Md., Kat Lanigan of Herndon, Va., and Joe Mornini of Rockville, Md. Notes From NatsTown will feature thoughts from each local All-Star on why they should represent the Nationals at the 2010 All-Star game in Anaheim.


The choice is yours. Vote HERE through Sunday, June 20.


Joe TRR '10 c.jpgTeam River Runner began in the summer of 2004, when kayaking legend Mike McCormick and I discussed how to create a whitewater-kayaking program for the wounded warriors at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Inspired by the heroes of September 11, we brainstormed this idea and how to make it happen. After years of connecting with paddling communities, veterans and wounded warriors, VA and DoD clinicians and supportive citizens across America, we made it happen and TRR has grown to proudly host 25 chapters nationally. We have had over 1,500 participants plus family members participate in one of our programs and/or trips.


Our goal is simple: travel to the nearest pool, river, lake or ocean and go out onto the healing waters and paddle. TRR paddling can be nature cruising on wilderness flat-water sections, driving through the surf line and out into oceans, or running pounding whitewater rivers all over this beautiful country. Each TRR chapter strives to have participating veterans take on strong leadership roles and assist in coordinating their local program. TRR wants our wounded warriors and disabled veteran athletes to be able to paddle at their highest potential, compete when interested, and teach others how to paddle as ACA Certified instructors.


Please VOTE FOR (me) JOE MORNINI because by doing so you are voting for hundreds of veterans and volunteers around the USA that are serving our wounded warriors.


Quotes from Wounded Warriors that participated with TRR while receiving treatment at Walter Reed Army Medical Center:


TRR group shot c.JPG“Joe has improved the quality of my live as well as the lives of HUNDREDS of other vets (and counting!).”


“Joe Mornini is the founder of Team River Runner, and one of my heroes. The kayaking program he runs is the best therapy for PTSD sufferers I’ve ever experienced!”


“Joe Mornini is on the Washington Nationals page! He’s a local boy, a special ed teacher, a kayaker, and has done a lot to save a few vets from their mental anguish and sheer boredom. Vote for Joe!”


TRR group shot 1 c.jpg“Please vote for Joe Mornini on this site. He started a Non-Profit called Team River Runner that teaches wounded servicemen and women how to have fun again. If it wasn’t for this program who knows where some of us would be today… Go to the Washington National and vote for Joe, then refresh the page and vote again and again. There are only a few days left to vote. Please help him win this honor so he can get TRR some advertising and get butts in boats!”


From a TRR volunteer:


“Basically, Joe’s about the most unselfish guy I’ve ever met. As nearly as I can tell he does what he does for no other reason than that it will help these young men and women (and some not so young). No profit motive, no quest for glory, just basic humanity at its best. How many people like that have any of us ever met?”

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