Operation Surf 2012 Brings 'Wounded Warriors' to Santa Cruz to Surf

Veterans rode the waves at Cowell's Beach on Tuesday and will be here all week.

Since 2006 Operation Surf, part of San Luis Obipso-based Amazing Surf Adventures, headed by surfer Van Curaza, as brought vets to the West Coast.

Cameron Clapp has been a part of Operation Surf for five years, yet, he is not part of any military group. Clapp was part of a freight train accident and had both legs along with his right arm amputated.

But his love for surfing and the will to strive past any obstacles that stood in his way has Clapp reaching out to fellow wounded members.

"I want to give back" said Clapp. "Show them that there's a lot of life to live even if you're missing a limb."

Even before his tragic accident, Clapp was always an active person in the water. He used to participate and swim in triathlons along with a vast number of swimming events. And ever since Clapp joined Operation Surf, he can enjoy his love for the sea once again.

"It gives you such a feeling of so much freedom," said Clapp "still being able to get up and surf waves just gives you that liberty of freedom and peace of mind."

There will be a farewell bash open to the public Saturday at 8 p.m. at


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