Posted 28th Oct 2016
In the latest of our Humans of the Waterway features, courtesy of the Canal & River Trust, we talk to David and Laura
"I remember volunteering to help on the canals when I was only 15, I've canoed and walked all around the water here. I think we live in one of the most beautiful parts of the country. It's funny really because when I was young I couldn't wait to get away from it. At 16 you just want to see the world!
I joined the Grenadiers and served outside Buckingham Palace and in the Gulf War. As an ex-Grenadier Guards I have suffered from Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Gulf War syndrome. Recently Laura and I lost a baby, so I come here almost every day for peace of mind.
Now I'm back here in Gloucestershire and awake to the bigger picture. I've been out of the army for 20 years now after spending nine years as a soldier and doing cadets before that. I understand the importance of joining the army, but it took the help of the charity for UK Forces Veterans, 'PTSD Resolution', to sort my mind out after going to war.
I'm a big fan of the Canal & River Trust charity and it's great to see things happening on the canals for good. I'm an Aquarian so the water is therapeutic for me! The water is fantastic and changes with the seasons. I bring my two kids who are six and four here and they love it too.
November is always a difficult time as it's Remembrance. But they say behind every good man is a greater woman! I see what I've got as beautiful – how she puts up with me, I have no idea! I love her. We are soul mates. I jump from cloud to cloud when I'm with her."
Image and text courtesy of the Canal & River Trust